World Bank Engages Ministry of Business

The Ministry of Business met with a team from the World Bank on Monday April 11th, 2016 to provide advice on improving the local business environment.

The World Bank’s ‘Ease of doing business index’ ranks economies from 1 to 189, with first place being the best. A high ease of doing business ranking means the regulatory environment is more conducive to the starting and operating of a local firm.

The index averages the country’s percentile rankings on 10 topics covered.

The World Bank team is visiting Guyana during April 11 – 14 and will have several meetings with both government agencies and the private sector.

Their focus is on the 10 pillars of the annual ‘Doing Business Report’. These include trade transactions, access to electricity, credit, land and construction permits, starting a business, paying taxes, enforcing contracts, and resolving insolvency.

The Ministry of Business hopes to consolidate previous reform efforts, current activities and new ideas.  Such improvements can include legislation, administrative procedures, and Information Technology systems, licencing and sharing of information.

In the World Bank Doing Business Index, Guyana is ranked 167th (out of 189 countries) for access to credit. This makes Guyana one of the most difficult places in the world to get credit, and this has contributed to a final position at 137 out of 189 countries overall in the Index.

The rankings are determined by sorting the average distance to frontier scores on 10 topics, each consisting of several indicators, giving equal weight to each topic.

The distance to frontier score aids in assessing the level of regulatory performance and how it improves over time. An economy’s distance to frontier is reflected on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 represents the lowest performance and 100, the frontier. For example, a score of 75 in DB 2015 means an economy was 25 percentage points away from the frontier constructed from the best performances across all economies and across time.

A score of 80 in DB 2016 would indicate the economy is improving. In this way the distance to frontier measure complements the annual ease of doing business ranking, which matches economies with one another at a point in time.

The Ministry of Business hopes that Guyana’s performance in the Doing Business Index can be significantly improved over the next five years. This will require cross-government collaboration on both small and larger reforms, which is expected to create economic growth, development and job creation.