Egypt top regional business reformer
London, September 10, 2008
Egypt reformed its business regulations more than any other country in the Middle East in the year to June, a World Bank affiliate said.
Egypt was the world's top reformer of business regulations last year and was again one of the world's top 10 reformers this year, the International Finance Corporation said in a report. But it ranked 114th globally in terms of ease of doing business.
Saudi Arabia, with the largest Arab economy, ranked highest in the Middle East in ease of doing business and 16th globally.
The Egyptian government made it easier to start a business through measures which included reducing the capital requirement by more than 80 percent and automating tax registration, the IFC said in its annual "Doing Business" report.
Egypt also changed listing rules on its stock exchange to strengthen protections for minority shareholders, sped customs clearance at the port of Alexandria and simplified procedures for registering property.
Egypt's economy, which expanded 7.2 percent in the last fiscal year, is growing at its fastest rate in decades after a market-oriented government took power in 2004. But urban inflation hit 22 percent in July, a 16-year high, as prices for food and beverages rose. - Reuters