Kenya improved by 12 places in the latest World Bank Ease of Doing Business report for having implemented the most business reforms.
The Doing Business 2018 report themed ‘Reforming to Create Jobs’ released on Monday showed that Kenya was placed at position 80, with Mauritius and Rwanda outpacing Kenya at 25th and 41st place respectively as the region’s top-ranked economies.
The report notes that the biggest reformers in the region have been Rwanda, with 52 reforms in 15 years, followed by Kenya with 32 reforms and Mauritius with 31 reforms.
“Kenya implemented the most reforms in the region in the past year, with six. Among other improvements, Kenya made starting a business easier by reducing the number of procedures required to register a business, and reduced the time for import documentary compliance by utilizing a single window system,” reads the statement.
In Kenya, for example, the time needed to start a business has been more than halved from 60 days in 2003, to 25 days today.
Kenya also improved the reliability of electricity supply by investing in distribution lines and transformers and by setting up a specialized squad to restore power when outages occur and implemented an online platform (itax) for filing and paying corporate income tax.
Cabinet Secretary for Industry, Trade and Cooperatives, Adan Mohamed said “Business reforms continue to gather steam. It is only through thriving business that we will be able to create job opportunities and to generate wealth. I wish to reiterate the government’s commitment to further improve the business climate in the country. Our goal is to be ranked amongst the top 50 countries in Ease of Doing Business in the next two years”.
Four other economies – Mauritania, Nigeria, Rwanda and Senegal – implemented five reforms each during the past year. Rwanda, which is second only to New Zealand in Registering Property, implemented online services to further facilitate property transfers. As a result, it now takes only seven days to legally transfer a property title in Rwanda.
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“The reform effort in Sub-Saharan Africa is singularly worth celebrating, as the region is beset with myriad crises, including conflict and violence. We hope to continue recording the region’s successes in enabling entrepreneurship to address the challenge of job creation, particularly for the region’s millions of young women and men,” said Rita Ramalho, Acting Director of the World Bank’s Global Indicators Group, which produces the report.