Turkey drops 14 places in World Bank’s Doing Business study
ISTANBULTurkey has fallen 14 places to 69th in the World Bank’s latest Doing Business report, published on Oct. 25.
In the breakdown of the report, Turkey fell 22 spots in the access to electricity category, while it also dropped in the protecting minority businesses category. It remained stable in paying taxes and trading across borders.
Johannes Zutt, the World Bank’s country director for Turkey, suggested that the drop in Turkey’s rank was partly due to methodological changes. “Using the same methods as last year, Turkey’s rank would have dropped slightly less, to 63rd,” Zutt said.
He pointed out that the drop does not indicate that Turkey has not carried out reforms, but rather that other countries have outpaced it in terms of reforms.
“It needs to be remembered that doing business is a relative ranking. So the main message for Turkey this year is that other countries are reforming more aggressively than Turkey is. Also, the report only reflects reforms completed [before June 2016]. Reforms over the last few months are not reflected, so Turkey may improve its ranking next year,” Zutt also said.
However, the period since June 2016 has also seen hundreds of Turkish companies expropriated in state of emergency measures in the aftermath of the failed July 15 coup attempt, which is expected to further damage Turkey’s rating in next year’s report.
On the positive ledger, Turkey improved 11 spots in the starting a new business category.
“Turkey made starting a business easier by allowing new companies to automatically receive potential tax identification numbers online through the Central Registration Recording System,” a World Bank statement said.
“Turkey made paying taxes easier by introducing electronic invoicing and electronic bookkeeping,” it added.
The Doing Business index is considered a valuable indicator for both local and global investors’ decision-making processes, as a high ease of doing business ranking suggests the regulatory environment is more conducive to starting and operating a firm in a specific country.
A record 137 economies around the world have adopted key reforms that make it easier to start and operate small and medium-sized businesses, this year’s report noted.
“The new report finds that developing countries carried out more than 75 percent of the 283 reforms in the past year, with Sub-Saharan Africa accounting for over one-quarter of all reforms,” it said.
In its global country rankings of business efficiency, Doing Business 2017 awarded its coveted top spot to New Zealand. Singapore ranks second, followed by Denmark; Hong Kong SAR, China; the Republic of Korea; Norway; the United Kingdom; the United States; Sweden; and the Republic of Macedonia.
The world’s top 10 improvers in this year’s report, based on reforms undertaken, are Brunei Darussalam; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Belarus; Indonesia; Serbia; Georgia; Pakistan; the United Arab Emirates (UAE); and Bahrain.