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Rwanda is the world's top reformer in Doing Business

Shanta Devarajan's picture

Based on the impact of reforms implemented between June 2008 and May 2009, Rwanda has been named "world's top reformer" in this year's Doing Business report. This is the first time an African country has received the title.  It now takes a Rwandese entrepreneur just two procedures and three days to start a business.  Transferring property takes less time, thanks to a reorganized registry and statutory time limits. Investors have more protection, insolvency reorganization has been streamlined, and a wider range of assets can be used as collateral to access credit.


Submitted by Timo on
Jumping from the 143rd to the 67th rank is a remarkable achievement and Rwanda needs to be commended for it. I just had to laugh when I saw the headline in the local paper (New Times) yesterday on the story, which read: "RWANDA LEADS THE WORLD IN BUSINESS" ...well, that might be overstating it a bit, but can you really criticize a little enthusiasm?

The pointer to the newspaper article in the previous comment is indeed telling a lot about the use and misuse of indicators and rankings. In fact the recent edition of the Doing Business clearly states: "Doing Business does not measure all aspects of the business environment that matter to firms or investors - or all factors that affect competitiveness. It does not, for example, measure security, macroeconomic stability, corruption, the labor skills of the population, the underlying strength of institutions or the quality of infrastructure. Nor does it focus on regulations specific to foreign investment." (p. vi) So, as we all know we have to be careful about interpreting rankings. I don't want to spoil the party for Rwanda but regarding the above mentioned limitations of the Doing Business from my point of view being "Top reformer" in the Doing Business report is not telling much. For those interested in a short analysis of the flaws of Doing Business let me refer to one of my own pieces: "Seven theses on Doing Business", available at

Submitted by Mark on
Well done Rwanda - it seems that some positive things have been achieved. Much more discussion about the pros and cons of the report simply remind us that economic development is a business itself, with many players striving to shape the debate.

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