East Timor and Mozambique shine on World Bank’s business environment ranking

28 September 2009

Washington, USA, 28 Sep – East Timor and Mozambique have achieved significant improvements in their World Bank business environment ranking, thanks to reforms implemented over the last year, while other Portuguese-speaking countries did not show significant variations compared to the previous study.

East Timor managed to rise 9 places from 173rd to 164th position, thanks to the improvement in its tax settlement system, reform of which is considered the best among the 183 countries, one of ten indicators considered in drawing up the Doing Business 2010 ranking, published this month by the financial institution for development support.

East Timor rose 56 places in this topic, allowing it rise to 19th position overall for tax, which is currently a great advantage for East Timor’s business environment, well ahead of international trade (85th overall position).

Also in the dealing with construction permits indicator the improvement was substantial – 10 positions – thanks to improvements introduced throughout the year.

The study also assesses the ease of starting a business, employing workers, registering property, getting credit, protecting investors, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and closing a business.

Overall, the best positions among Portuguese-speaking countries are held, as the study indicated last year, by Portugal (48th position, with no change from last year) and Brazil (129th, down two places).

Mozambique, which achieved 41st place for protecting investors, rose five places in relation to last year to 135th position, thanks to improvements in starting a business (from 143rd overall position to 96th).

However, Mozambique’s position also sustained some falls, notably in dealing with construction permits (down 8 places) and in paying taxes (down 5 places).

Angola also improved its ranking (from 170th to 169th place), thanks to greater ease in dealing with construction permits, for which the country rose three places compared to last year.

Cape Verde had a similar variation rising from 147th to 146th place, with a significant improvement in ease of starting a business (28 places higher than last year), though an equally significant fall in terms of ease of getting credit (down 19 places).

The best of the Cape Verdean business environment continues to be enforcing contracts (38th position) and international trade (58th).

Angolan advantages – getting credit (87th place) and investor protection (57th) – fell slightly compared to last year, and enforcing contracts continues to be the main obstacle to a better position in the ranking, with one of the worst overall places (181st).

Sao Tome and Principe (180th) and Guinea Bissau (181st) remain at the bottom of the table, only ahead of the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the country the World Bank considers to be the world’s worst in which to do business, the Central African Republic.

The top four positions remain unchanged from the previous study: Singapure (1st), New Zealand, Hong Kong and the USA.

Among the “eight” Portugal was the country with the most reforms (4 introduced), followed by Cape Verde and Mozambique, both with two significant changes in terms of the 10 indicators considered in the study.

Brazil was the only Portuguese-speaking country to get a worse ranking this year, falling to 129th overall place, mainly due to the fall of six places in the international trade indicator. (macauhub)