Economy

Australia ranked in the top 10 places in the world to do business

Kirsten Robb /

Running a business in Libya’s not much fun

With constant talk of unreasonably high penalty rates and the barriers created by red tape, Aussie small business owners may be surprised to learn Australia is considered to be one the easiest places in the world to run a business.

The World Bank has placed Australia in the top ten business-friendly countries in its latest Doing Business 2015 report.

Australia is ranked 10th on the list, hot on the heels of the US (eighth) and Finland (ninth). Singapore topped the list, while our rival from across the Tasman, New Zealand, was listed as the second best country for businesses.

Read more: “Starting a business in Australia is pretty easy”

Libya and Eritrea were named the worst nations in the world to run a business.

The annual report compares data from 189 economies, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, measuring quantitative indicators of business regulations.

The rankings are based on a series of indicators including the ease of starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts, and resolving insolvency.

But Peter Strong, executive director of the Council of Small Business of Australia, told SmartCompany those indicators do not take into account some of the toughest factors for Australian SMEs.

“There are some things, things like our competition policy, that we are very bad at,” says Strong.

“If other countries have someone worse than Coles, then god help them.”

Strong also lists uncompetitive wages and penalty rates, as well as poor contract law as barriers to Australian small businesses.

“Everybody has it better than they like to think they do, of course, and these sorts of things highlight the good. But we have to make sure we continue to focus on the areas of improvement,” he adds.

 

Rank Country Score
1 Singapore 88.27
2 New Zealand 86.91
3 Hong Kong SAR 84.97 
4 Denmark 84.20
5 Korea Rep 83.40 
6 Norway 82.40
7 United States 81.98
8 United Kingdon 80.96
9 Finland 80.83
10 Australia 80.66

 

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Kirsten Robb

Kirsten Robb is a former journalist at SmartCompany. Previously, she worked at News Corp as a property reporter for Leader Newspapers and the Herald Sun, and holds a Masters of Journalism at Melbourne University.

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