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ECONOMY, MARKETS & INVESTING | Staff Reporter, New Zealand
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New Zealand is the easiest place to do business

It holds the shortest time to start a business at 0.5 days.

New Zealand ranked first out of 190 global economies in 2018 with an ease of doing business score of 86.59, according to the World Bank’s Doing Business 2019 report.

It was followed by Singapore (85.24), Denmark (84.64), Hong Kong (84.22) and Korea (84.14).

“The economies that rank the highest in ease of doing business are those that have consistently well designed business regulation or whose regulatory environments have thrived thanks to comprehensive reform over the years,” the report said.

Whilst variation across areas of regulation is frequently observed across all economies, New Zealand continued to rank high amongst certain aspects of ‘doing business’ the report revealed. It holds the shortest time taken to start a business at 0.5 days, placed first in ease of registering property, starting a business and getting credit, and came in second with regard to protecting minority investors.

The study also highlighted how New Zealand cut costs on starting a business by slashing fees for name search and company incorporation.

Meanwhile, New Zealand also ranked first under the building quality control index alongside Luxembourg and United Arab Emirates based on the report.

However, New Zealand came in 10th with paying taxes, 21st in enforcing contracts, 45th in getting electricity and 60th in trading across borders.

The quality of building regulations index has two components - whether building regulations are easily accessible and whether the requirements for obtaining a building permit are clearly specified which ranges from 0 to 2, with higher values indicating clearer and more transparent building regulations.

The World Bank observed how in New Zealand, all relevant legislation can be found on an official government website which specifies the list of required documents to submit, the fees to be paid, and all required preapprovals of the drawings or plans by the relevant agencies, the report highlighted. As a result, the country scored 1 for both components and New Zealand received a score of 2 on the index.

The World Bank’s ‘Doing Business’ report gathers data on 11 areas of business regulation. Its ease of doing business score shows an economy’s absolute position to the best regulatory practice, whilst the ease of doing business ranking is an indication of an economy’s position relative to that of other economies. 

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