October 26, 2016

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Myanmar business environment improves after reforms — East Asia and Pacific Makes Steady Progress to Improve Business Environment: Doing Business Report

Workers are seen at the production line of a garment factory in Yangon.
Workers are seen at the production line of a garment factory in Yangon.

Myanmar has improved its business regulatory environment over the past year through reforms on business registration and the enactment of a law that allows the establishment of a new credit bureau, finds the World Bank Group’s annual Doing Business report.
The report finds that over two-thirds of East Asia and the Pacific region’s 25 economies implemented 45 reforms in the past year to make it easier to do business, compared to only 28 reforms in the previous year.
Four economies in the East Asia and Pacific region rank among the top 10 economies globally in the Doing Business rankings. The top-ranked economies are New Zealand (at 1), followed by Singapore (2), Hong Kong SAR, China (4) and the Republic of Korea (5).
Myanmar now ranks at 170 among 190 economies on ease of doing business, compared to 171 last year. When compared with leading economies, Myanmar made starting a business easier by reducing the cost to register a company. It also simplified the process by removing the requirement to submit a reference letter and a criminal history certificate in order to incorporate a company. Myanmar also improved its credit information system by enacting a law that allows the establishment of a new credit bureau. However, the report also noted that Myanmar made trading across borders more difficult for traders as they experience higher costs and time delays due to congestion at the port of Yangon.
“Myanmar is steadily making progress in creating a business environment that will help the country sustain its strong pace of growth,” said World Bank Country Manager for Myanmar Abdoulaye Seck. “Pursuing business reforms will help the country create a vibrant private-sector and eventually, more jobs and better income for the people of Myanmar.”
Myanmar has the potential to follow the same path of inclusive growth as other high performing countries in the region, the report noted. Indonesia, which implemented seven reforms during the past year, made Starting a Business easier by abolishing the minimum capital requirement for small and medium-size enterprises and by encouraging the use of an online system to reserve company names. As a result, it now takes 22 days to start a business in Jakarta, compared with 46.5 days previously.

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