Zimbabwe Improves on the Ease of Doing Business index

Zimbabwe Improves on the Ease of Doing Business index
Image Credit: Phoenix fm

Zimbabwe has this year improved on the ease of doing business index as it positively moved to 155 out of 190 countries in 2019 from 171.

The ease of doing business index, created by the World Bank, presents quantitative indicators on business regulation and the protection of property rights that can be compared across 190 economies—from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe—and over time.

At a stakeholder meeting today, World Bank’s Svetlana Bogdanova attributed Zimbabwe’s success to communication with the private sector.

“I think the Government of Zimbabwe has been very cautious of the need to communicate reforms to engage with the private sector, to make sure that information about all these efforts is readily available, not only on the internet and mass media but also through events through outreach and seminars and workshops like this one,” Bogdanova said.

Bogdanova said that what has been discovered over the years on the Ease of Doing Business report is that often unnoticed by the private sector.

Zimbabwe’s improvement in the Ease of Doing Business is as a result of the Government’s reforms in starting a business where time needed to obtain a business license was reduced 32 days 2018 from 61 in 2017.

Time to attain a construction permit, through the use of a one-stop shop, was also reduced to 208 in 2018 from 238 in 2017.

Zimbabwe’s depth of credit information index was increased to 6 in 2018 from 4 in 2017 after the country increased the coverage of the credit registry and reintroduced credit scores. Depth of credit information index measures rules affecting the scope, accessibility, and quality of credit information available through public or private credit registries. Eight is the highest score and zero is the lowest.

On enforcing contracts, Zimbabwe made enforcing contracts easier by making judgments rendered
at the appellate and supreme court level in commercial cases available to the general public online.

Bogdanova however said Zimbabwe could do more to improve on the Ease of Doing Business index.

She criticised Zimbabwe of failing to enact business bills into law. Some of the bills that have not been enacted into law include the Companies Act, Insolvent Act, Estate Administrators Act Amendment Bill, Manpower Act Amendment and Regional Town and Country Planning Act.

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