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Doing Business 2009: Philippines (Manila)

Thought this might be informative for the group. Here's the link to the report: Protected content

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Doing Business Protected content The Philippines Needs to Accelerate and Complete Reforms to Achieve Greater Economic and Social Impact

MANILA, September 10, Protected content and completing the reforms that the Philippines started in the last few years is necessary to improve the local business environment, create more jobs, and reduce poverty, according to the heads of IFC and the World Bank in the country. They were speaking today at the launch of Doing Business Protected content sixth report in an annual series published by IFC and the World Bank.

The report looks into the laws, rules, and regulations that enhance or impede business activities in Protected content based on 10 indicators: starting a business, dealing with construction permits, employing workers, registering property, getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts, and closing a business. The Philippines ranks 140, and the report cited the country for upgrading the risk management and electronic data interchange system for customs, making it less cumbersome to do business across the border.

Jesse Ang, IFC Resident Representative, said, “Major initiatives have been undertaken in key sectors. To have an impact on the business climate indicators and achieve higher economic growth, it is imperative for the country to stay on course, hasten the process, and complete the reforms.”

The reforms underway include establishing a Web-based registry system and a credit information system to reduce lending risks, and implementing the anti-red-tape law to ensure speed and transparency in government transactions with the public. “We should make these reforms happen—and soon,” Ang added.

“Accelerating reforms in business regulations and increasing competition could boost the government’s efforts to achieve sustained and pro-poor growth,” said Bert Hofman, World Bank Philippines Country Director. “Less cumbersome regulations bring small and microenterprises into the formal sector and enables increased access to finance for their expansion. This creates more jobs that are protected by labor laws. Research indicates that countries with burdensome regulations tend to have a larger informal sector, higher unemployment, and slower rates of new business formation.”

Globally, Singapore leads the rankings on the overall regulatory ease of doing business for a third consecutive year. New Zealand is runner-up, and the United States is in third place. Other high-ranking countries in East Asia and the Pacific are China’s Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, and South Korea. These countries also took steps to protect investors, improve bankruptcy procedures, and strengthen the legal rights of creditors and borrowers. Cambodia’s new secured transactions law made it the world’s leading economy in easing access to credit.

Manila Forum