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How Other Countries Fare with Singapore on Business Ease

World Bank’s recent report on Doing Business has put Singapore again on the map in terms of ease of doing business for foreign expats and locals. For seven years straight, the country has ranked first on the report, even nagging first place too in a few categories in the report that include “trading across borders.”

The city-state also ranked high on the top five lists for ease of business set-up, acquiring construction licenses, applying for investor protection and tax compliance. Singapore has appeared high in other categories; its lowest rank on the report was 36th.

Hong Kong meanwhile placed second on the report, following Singapore across the board. The city also ranked high in top five lists, nagging first place for ease of acquiring construction licenses. It trails behind Singapore in the list for “trading across borders.”

Hong Kong fares well in terms of economic freedom according to a recent report. According to the Economic Freedom of the World Annual Report, Hong Kong tops the list of global countries that offer the highest level of economic freedom. There’s also less bureaucracy in Hong Kong, which allows the shipping of goods to and from mainland China, because of its status as China’s Special Administrative Region.

Singapore’s neighbor Malaysia has recently caught up on the list, jumping six spots ahead to 12th spots from its previous spot. Malaysia has experienced a tremendous growth over the past years following its implementation of economic reform policies that has been welcome news to foreign investors. The country gets the top spot for ease of credit acquisition and fourth for investor protection.

China, another key trading partner of Singapore, has placed 91st on the list because of economic slowdowns this year which saw a 7.4% GDP growth in Q3 2012. Indonesia and India rank respectively on the list at 128 and 132.

Singapore’s open economy, lenient trading policies, world-class amenities and attractive tax schemes have propelled it to become one of the leading business destinations in the world.