Egypt ranked 122 out of 189 countries in the World Bank Group’s Doing Business report for 2017. This is an improvement from last year when Egypt was ranked 131 out of 189.
The report attributed the improvement to two reforms. First, starting businesses in the country became easier as one-stop shops were introduced as a follow-up unit to liaise with the tax and labour authorities on behalf of the entrepreneur. This is besides enhanced protection for minority investors. Second, there have been changes in the methodology of the Doing Business Indicator, which impacted Egypt’s ranking positively.
The report noted that Egypt’s ranking depends on four indicators: dealing with construction permits, obtaining electricity, registering property, and resolving insolvency.
The United Arab Emirates is the region’s top ranked economy with a global ranking of 26, followed by Bahrain at 63, and then Oman ranked at 66.
Based on the reforms undertaken, the UAE and Bahrain are also among the global top 10 improvers.
International Finance Corporation (IFC) regional director for the Middle East and North Africa Mouayed Makhlouf said that sustainable and continuous business regulatory reforms are key to restoring investor confidence, unlocking private sector potential, and boosting overall economic development in Egypt.
The report also highlighted the good performance of Middle East economies in paying taxes; however, Egypt has not yet implemented a VAT refund mechanism for capital expenses.