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Argentina saw the best improvement among Latin America's top economies when it comes to doing business, according to a Latinvex analysis of new World Bank data. Here the Avenida de 9 de Julio in capital Buenos Aires. (Photo: Buenos Aires City Government)
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Trade Talk

Doing Business: Argentina Improves

Brazil and Mexico worsen, El Salvador leads gains in doing business.


Argentina improved its environment for doing business, while Brazil and Mexico worsened, according to the latest Doing Business report from The World Bank.

Meanwhile, Chile moved up two spots in Latin America and now again ranks behind Mexico, as it did two years ago, while Colombia fell two spots.

“Reforms implemented by economies in Latin America and the Caribbean continue to improve the business environment for entrepreneurs,” Santiago Croci Downes, Program Manager of The World Bank’s Doing Business Unit, said in a statement. “As the impact of these reforms spreads, we are likely to see a more dynamic private sector which will boost economic growth in the region.”

The Doing Business report, which was launched 15 years ago, looks at domestic small and medium-size companies and measures the regulations applying to them through their life cycle, including starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.


The big winner is El Salvador, which now ranks ahead of Panama thanks to improving its score by 5.4 points.

“El Salvador earned a notable spot in this year’s global top improvers, with four reforms adopted during the past year,” The World Bank says. “These included improving the reliability of electricity by introducing a better outage management system and maintenance planning and making it easier for businesses to pay taxes by implementing an online platform for filing and payment of taxes. Other reforms covered the Doing Business areas of Dealing with Construction Permits and Trading Across Borders.

The Dominican Republic posted the second-largest gain in its score due to three reforms, including reducing the time to start a business and improving the reliability of electricity supply.

Argentina, Latin America’s third-largest economy, also gained its score, as did Costa Rica, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Venezuela is the big loser, showing a 2.5 point fall in its score. It now ranks 188th worldwide, only better than other basket cases like Eritrea and Somalia.  

Other major losers are Guatemala, Colombia and Panama.


Brazil, Latin America’s largest economy, implemented one reform to facilitate cross border trade by reducing the time for documentary compliance for both exporting and importing. In the past 15 years, Brazil has implemented a total of 18 reforms, above the regional average of 12 reforms, according to The World Bank.

Meanwhile, Mexico, the region’s second largest economy, also implemented one reform in the past year. The reform, in the Doing Business area of Getting Electricity, is aimed at improving the reliability of electricity supply. Mexico has implemented a total of 26 reforms in the past 15 years.

© Copyright Latinvex


Doing Business: Best & Worst

LRK Ch GRK Country Score Ch
1 49 Mexico 72.27 -0.02
2 2 55 Chile 71.22 0.3
3 58 Peru 69.45 -0.8
4 -2 59 Colombia 69.41 -1.51
5 61 Costa Rica 69.13 0.63
6 3 73 El Salvador 66.42 5.4
7 -1 79 Panama 65.27 -0.92
8 94 Uruguay 61.99 0.14
9 -2 97 Guatemala 61.18 -1.75
10 99 Dom. Rep. 60.93 1.58
11 1 108 Paraguay 59.18 0.15
12 -1 115 Honduras 58.46 -0.63
13 1 117 Argentina 58.11 0.66
14 -1 118 Ecuador 57.83 -0.14
15 125 Brazil 56.45 -0.08
16 131 Nicaragua 55.39 -0.36
17 152 Bolivia 50.18 0.33
18 188 Venezuela 30.87 -2.5
LAC Average 58.66 -0.09
LRK=Latin America rank
GRK=Global rank

Sources: The World Bank's Doing Business 2018; Latinvex (rank, changes)


























































































































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