NZ 1st in OECD, 3rd in world for business ease

30/10/2013

The World Bank’s Doing Business report ranks New Zealand third, and it is the highest-ranked OECD economy .

The annual report measures government regulations and their effect on business across 189 countries.

A media release says:

A new World Bank Group report finds that high-income economies in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) continue to lead the world in providing business-friendly environments for local entrepreneurs.

Doing Business 2014: Understanding Regulations for Small and Medium-Size Enterprises ranks 189 economies on the ease of doing business. Six of the top 10 are OECD economies: New Zealand, the United States, Denmark, the Republic of Korea, Norway, and the United Kingdom. OECD economies also continue to take steps to improve business regulations, with more than half implementing at least one regulatory reform in the past year.

New Zealand, the highest-ranked OECD economy, has made sustained efforts to improve its business climate. The report finds that in the past year New Zealand made it easier to enforce contracts by implementing an electronic case management system—improving the recording of court cases, lowering costs, and shortening resolution times.

“OECD economies on average have managed to create a regulatory system that facilitates interactions in the marketplace and protects important public interests without unnecessarily hindering the development of the private sector,” said Augusto Lopez-Claros, Director, Global Indicators and Analysis, World Bank Group. “Their stronger institutions and lower transactions costs provide an appropriate point of reference for other economies. In fact, we see countries increasingly seeking to narrow the gap with OECD practices, notably in Europe and Central Asia.”

The breakdown on New Zealand is here.

Economic Development and Small Business Minister Steven Joyce today welcomed the report:

“This is excellent news. Only Singapore and Hong Kong are higher than us overall and we still rank first in the world for starting a business and investor protection,” Mr Joyce says.

“This World Bank report is highly regarded and is used by businesses internationally when they consider setting up operations. The fact that New Zealand continues to rank so high sends a clear message that we are an ideal country for business investment.”

While New Zealand is in third place for the second year running, improvements to the business regulations were evident in a number of areas.

The cost to a business of construction permits and getting an electricity supply, as a percentage of income per capita, have dropped every year since 2010. Improvements to New Zealand’s court system were also cited by the World Bank as making contract enforcement speedier and less costly to business.    

The World Bank’s Doing Business report provides objective measures of the time, cost and number of procedures involved in all major aspects of running a business. . .

Ease of doing business is important.

Less time and money wasted on difficulties in doing business leaves more to spend in and on the business.

There is no room for complacency, though. We’re good and with the right policies we can be better.


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