Friday

18th Jan 2019

Eastern Europe overtakes East Asia for ease of doing business

  • Eastern Europe has become more business-friendly than East Asia (Photo: EUosberver.com)

Thanks to regulatory reforms, Eastern Europe and Central Asia have surpassed East Asia for ease of doing business, a World Bank report says.

The report, called "Doing Business" compares and ranks 178 economies and seven regions on the basis of ten indicators related to business regulations.

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While the OECD as a region remains the easiest place to do business, most Eastern European economies now rank ahead of Taiwan, China and Vietnam, but still behind Hong Kong and Japan.

The difference between Eastern Europe and East Asia however remains small – only one ranking point.

Several of the region's countries have also overtaken some Western European economies. Estonia and Georgia for instance, the region's two top performers, have surpassed most EU members and both hold a spot in the top twenty – a place traditionally only occupied by OECD countries.

In Eastern Europe, Croatia, Macedonia, Georgia, Belarus and Turkey climbed the most places in the ranking this year, and among EU members, Bulgaria and Hungary were the pacesetters.

According to the report, business-friendly countries usually have higher growth, less unemployment and a smaller share of the economy in the informal sector.

Eastern Europe was also praised for being the region where the most positive reforms on business regulations were made.

According to Simeon Djankov, the lead author of the report, making business regulations easier results in a rising number of entrepreneurs.

"Eastern Europe has witnessed a boom in new business entry that rivals the rapid growth in East Asia in the past," he said.

For the second year in a row, Singapore tops the ranking. The Democratic Republic of Congo trails the list.

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