NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 1 – Kenya has moved 12 places in Ease of Doing Business 2018 to position 80 globally out of 190 countries compared to position 92 in the 2017 report.
The improvement was mainly helped by reforms in starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, access to credit, paying taxes and trading across borders.
The country was ranked the third position in the continent behind Mauritius and Rwanda.
Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohammed said the new ranking will see Kenya improve in attracting investments in the country.
“The Improvements are driven by efforts by the government and the private sector in improving the business climate. Kenya has delivered last year the highest number of business-related reforms on the African continent,” he said.
Foreign Direct Investment levels in Kenya have risen from Sh40.1 billion in 2013 to Sh207 billion in 2016.
Kenya has moved 53 positions over the last three years and the new position is Kenya’s best performance in the last 15 years.
Improvements in global rankings are intended to increase the level of efficiency for businesses and increase the level of both local and Foreign Direct Investment which has a positive impact on Job creation.
Last year, Kenya moved 21 places position 92 globally out of 190 countries making it the third most improved economy for two years in a row.
In the 2016 report, Kenya was in position 113 having moved 28 positions from the previous year.
The country has a target to reach top 50 by 2020.
According to the report, Kenya improved the reliability of electricity by investing in its distribution lines and transformers and by setting up a specialized squad to restore power when outages occur.
Kenya also improved access to credit information by starting to distribute data from two utility companies.
“Kenya made paying taxes easier by implementing an online platform, iTax, for filing and paying corporate income tax and the standards levy. Kenya also reduced the time for import documentary compliance by utilizing its single window system, which allows for electronic submission of customs entries,” the report states.
Other notable improvements include making construction permits less expensive by eliminating fees for clearances from the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) and the National Construction Authority as well as merging procedures required to start-up and formally operate a business.
New Zealand is ranked the first position followed by Singapore and Denmark while Somalia emerged the worst followed by Eriteria and Venezuela.
India was the most improved economy jumping 30 ranks to hit the top 100 mark.