September 18, 2009

Moldova Lauded in World Bank Report for Business Reforms

Moldova, which has struggled with a communist legacy of public agencies uninterested in the woes of business, was recently cited as a top business reformer in the World Bank’s Doing Business 2010 report.

The nation improved from 103rd to 94th in the most recent Doing Business annual world rankings, which measure a nation’s business regulations, property rights, tax burdens, access to credit, and cost of exporting and importing. Moldova’s improvement of nine places in the rankings made it the sixth-best reformer out of 183 nations measured.

The small, landlocked country, located between Romania and Ukraine, was lauded for lowering its rates for social security contributions paid by employers; easing business start-up by expediting company registration; and simplifying property registration by eliminating the requirement for a cadastral sketch, thus reducing the time and number of steps needed to register.

Moldova is being assisted in its reform programs by the Business Regulatory and Tax Administration Reform (BIZTAR) project, a U.S. Agency for International Development-funded initiative whose implementation is led by DAI. BIZTAR is now working on business reforms in five more areas, while construction reforms the project helped institute are expected to be enacted into law later this year, reducing the time required to obtain construction permits from 292 days to around 150.

The World Bank’s recognition of Moldova offers further encouragement for reformers as a newly elected government committed to improving governance takes power this month.