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Taiwan leaps to 16th in ease of 'Doing Business' ranking

WASHINGTON -- Taiwan ranked 16th in the world in terms of the overall regulatory ease of doing business in 2012, up nine places from the previous year to crack the world's top 20 for the first time, according to an annual report released Monday by the Washington-based World Bank Group.

The area in which Taiwan made the most significant progress was in the ease of dealing with construction permits, which saw a dramatic leap of 67 notches to ninth, the “Doing Business 2013” report revealed.

The progress in the construction permit indicator reflected Taiwan's efforts to streamline procedures by providing a one-stop application process to investors that makes doing business in the domestic market more convenient, the report said.

Taiwan also showed major improvement in “protecting investors,” rising to 32nd in the category from the previous 79th, according to the report.

Among other indicators, Taiwan ranked sixth in the world in “getting electricity,” compared with fifth last year, and 16th in “starting business,” down a notch from a year earlier.

The report ranked Taiwan 23rd in “trading across borders,” up from 27th a year earlier, and 15th in “resolving insolvency,” down from 14th the previous year.

Taiwan fell to 90th in the “enforcing contracts” category from last year's 89th, dropped to 70th from 67th in the “getting credit” category, and rose to 54th from the previous 64th in the area of “paying taxes,” according to the World Bank.

The country placed 61st in the global Ease of Doing Business ranking in 2008. After intensive efforts to reform its regulatory framework, Taiwan saw its ranking rise to 46th in 2009, 33rd in 2010 and 25th in 2011.

In the latest global ranking of 185 economies in the world, Singapore took first place for the seventh consecutive year, followed by Hong Kong, New Zealand, the United States, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Georgia and Australia, the World Bank said.

Japan ranked 24th in the ranking, while China finished 91st, according to the report.

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