Azerbaijan to Enter Top Ten of Doing Business in 2008
Azerbaijan, Baku, 5 July / Trend corr I.Khalilova/ "In 2008, Azerbaijan will be included in top 10 reformer countries' list of World Bank's business simplification rating," Azerbaijan's Economic Development Minister Heydar Babayev said on 4 July.
According to Babayev, Azerbaijan's rating in Doing Business-2008: How to Fulfil Reforms, joint report of WB and International Finance Corporation, will be publicized in October.
"Such improvement of country's rating this year makes us believe it will climb up several more positions next year," said Babayev.
According to Babayev, WB's rating is the most objective one and investors take it as a basis.
Presidential decree 'On Several Arrangements on Development of Entrepreneurship' dated to 30 April 2007 played an important role in improvement of business climate in the country. During his recent visit to Baku, author of the report Simeon Djankov praised simplification of business registration system, improvement of tax policy and the arrangements on real property registration. He advised Azerbaijan to continue promotion and protection of investments, preparation of passports for construction, allocation of land, as well as simplification of procedures on building expertise and other reforms.
As a result of application of 'single window' principle (since 1 January 2008 Tax Ministry became the only registration body), registration period of new enterprises dropped from 72 days to at most 3 days and the number of steps from 15 to 5.
According to international practice, in conformity with business doing report, opening of a bank account and notary's registration must be completed within one day. As a result of reforms carried out for registration and several other directions, Georgia climbed up from the 112th position to the 37th and in recent report to the 18th position. Azerbaijan currently occupies the 96th position, climbing up only by 3 positions.
Simplification of procedures is expected to increase the number of juridical entities registered in one year to 10-15,000, while so far the number has not ever exceed 4-5,000. Individuals have numbered 20-30,000 people.
Situation in the world is quite different due to liberalization of registration procedures. In the United States, juridical entities comprise 17mln of annually registered 25mln entrepreneurs.
At the moment, over 70,000 enterprises and about 200,000 individual entrepreneurs operate in Azerbaijan.
Doing Business-2008 lists 178 countries in conformity with improvement of their business climate (results from10 entrepreneurship management fields are taken into account).
The correspondent can be contacted at [email protected]