Business environment improves in all Portuguese-speaking countries

The business environment improved from 2016 to 2017 in all Portuguese-speaking countries, among which Cabo Verde (Cape Verde) was the best positioned and Angola the one that rose the most, according to the classification in the World Bank “Doing Business” report for 2018.

The study evidences a wave of reforms in Africa: in the period under review almost one third of all reforms introduced globally were implemented in Africa, a record number of 83 reforms to facilitate business in 36 of 48 economies in sub-Saharan Africa.

“This is the largest number of reforms ever recorded by the Doing Business report in any region,” said the World Bank.

Among the countries implementing the most reforms were two Portuguese-speaking countries: Angola and Cabo Verde, with 3 reforms each.

Cabo Verde was once again the best-placed Portuguese-speaking African country in 127th place, two places higher than in the 2017 edition and very close to Brazil (125th), with its score rising from 55.82 to 56.24 points.

“In the case of Cabo Verde, the country implemented three reforms recognised under the Doing Business 2018 report. These reforms covered the areas of obtaining permits for construction, international trade and dealing with insolvencies,” the World Bank said.

Among the main aims of the Cape Verdean government for this term of office is to improve the business environment, with a view to attracting investment and stimulate growth in the country.

Mozambique, in 138th place, was the second Portuguese-speaking African country in the ranking, whose score also rose, thanks to two reforms it introduced, followed by São Tomé Príncipe (169th).

The area of ​​greatest improvement in Mozambique was access to electricity, with its strengths being construction licensing (56th place overall), resolution of insolvencies (75th) and its weaknesses were respect for contracts (186th place) and access to credit (159th).

Angola has previously been the poorest Portuguese-speaking country in the World Bank study, but thanks to the introduction of three reforms it managed to rise to 175th place, overtaking Guinea-Bissau (176th), which only introduced a single reform to improve the business environment.

In Angola, the most significant areas of improvement were cross-border trade and access to electricity. Its strengths were building permits (80th overall) and protection of minority investors (81st) and its weaknesses were respect for contracts (184th place) and access to credit (183rd).

Angola is China’s largest trading partner in Portuguese-speaking Africa, and until September trade rose by 45.37% to US$17.13 billion.

Beijing sold products to Luanda valued at US$1.65 billion – up 33.65%t – and bought goods valued at US$15.47 billion, up 46.75%.

In total, trade between China and the Portuguese-speaking countries grew by 29.36% to September. (macauhub)