Singapore, New Zealand and Hong Kong make up the Top 3 business-friendly destinations, according “Doing Business 2015: Going Beyond Efficiency,” the latest in the World Bank Group’s annual rankings of economies that encourage entrepreneurship through improvements in regulations and strengthening of laws in support of enterprise and trade.

Rounding out the Top 10 are: Denmark, the Republic of Korea, Norway, the United States, the United Kingdom, Finland and Australia.

With its “Doing Business” series of reports, the World Bank Group has tracked more than 2,400 regulatory reforms that have helped make things easier for entrepreneurs to conduct business around the world. For example, a decade ago, it would take 48 days for a Colombian entrepreneur to import key items from overseas–today the same process takes only 13 days.

In its latest report, the researchers found that many Latin American economies are making significant strides in removing obstacles to conducting business. It cited Costa Rica and Guatemala’s new electronic systems for filing and paying corporate taxes, which has helped organizations save more than 60 hours a year meeting compliance requirements.

Colombia topped the list of Top 5 business-friendly Latin American economies, followed by Peru, Mexico, Chile and Puerto Rico.

“Some Latin American economies have been improving their business environment for almost a decade, reaching levels in  many cases on par with  global best practices said Augusto Lopez-Claros, Director, Global indicators Group, Development Economics, World Bank Group. “Accelerating and expanding this process would help close the gap with global top performers and boost competitiveness.”

Some other key findings about Latin America and the Caribbean include:

  • Sixteen of 32 economies implemented at least one regulatory reform from June 1, 2013 to June 1, 2014 to make it easier to do business–29 reforms in total.
  • Since 2005, Colombia has implemented the most regulatory reforms–29–in the region to remove obstacles to doing business. Mexico was second best, introducing 21 reforms, followed by Guatemala with 20.

To download “Doing Business 2015: Going Beyond Efficiency,” click here.

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