The World Bank has recently released its “Doing Business” rankings for 183 countries in the global economy covering the period to May 2010.
Australia came in 10th overall behind the likes of Singpaore (#1), Hong Kong (#2) and New Zealand (#3). Our ranking has not changed from the 2010 level although there are some areas where changes are worthy of note.
Our ranking for Dealing with Construction Permits decreased to 63rd (from 62nd), Registering a Property dropped to 35th from 32nd, Protecting Investors dropped two spots to 59th and Paying Taxes dropped 4 spots to 48th. Starting a Business improved to 2nd from 3rd and Closing a Business moved from 14th to 12th.
Overall, whilst the ultimate ranking is quite good at 10th, it is worth noting that the compliance scores with regard to delaing with our various layers of government are hassles that would appear on first (and possbly subsequent) glances to hold us back globally. Consider our “issue” with dealing with Construction Permits – we rate 63rd globally and only Norway in the Top 10 “beats” us at 65th. With regard to Paying Taxes, the only country lagging behind us is the US. Getting Credit is pretty easy (we rank equal 6th) but (until recently) we knew that.
When looking at the results, we need to possibly consider the level of bureaucratic involvement in our lives via business – the layers of red tape wrapped around our compliance obligations over here need to be freed up. Just stoking the fires of “cross ditch” rivalry, I am disappoitned that the Kiwis outrank us in nearly every facet of the assessment parameters!
So how easy is it to do business in Australia? Better than some and not as good as others!