There is good news on the business front for some African nations: The Doing Business 2018 report from World Bank Group lists Djibouti, Malawi, Nigeria and Zambia among the world’s 10 most improved economies when it comes to regulatory reforms that make it easier to do business.
Malawi, at No. 110 overall, came in behind Brunei and Thailand for the most-improved score on the strength of better credit access, construction permitting, cross-border trade and dealing with insolvency. Djibouti and Nigeria saw improvements for entrepreneurs, while Zambia scored on getting credit and paying taxes. Sub-Saharan Africa was among the regions showing the highest share of reforming economies.
Mauritius ranked highest overall among African nations, coming in at No. 25 and showing the greatest improvement in registering property, a strong area for Djibouti and Rwanda too. In Mauritius, that was achieved by elimination of an onerous 10 percent transfer tax and registration fee. Mauritania also made strides in this area by launching a website and reducing the multiple registrations previously needed, despite its overall ranking at No. 150. The lowest performer in the rankings was Somalia at No. 190.
The annual report looks at 10 indicators for ranking 190 countries. They include starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit and protecting minority investors. The rankings also consider the ease-of-business impact of paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.
While Doing Business also measures labor market regulation, that’s not included in this year’s 312-page report. It’s available for download at this link.
Image: World Bank Group