Austria beaten by Liberia in startup ranking

The Local Austria
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Austria beaten by Liberia in startup ranking
A successful Austrian business: voestalpine AG. Photo: APA (Gindl)

A new survey released by the World Bank shows that Austria lags far behind its European neighbours when it comes to making it easy to start and run a business.


Austria is actually doing worse compared with last year, as it has dropped two places in the world rankings, from 19th to 21st place. The best place for doing business in Europe is Denmark.

The Doing Business 2015 report looks at countries’ business regulations, including the ease of starting a business, paying taxes and trading across borders. A total of ten topics were examined in 189 global economies in the 2015 rankings. 

One area for special concern shows improvement.  Last year, Austria was 113th in the world in terms of the ease of starting a business - it has improved that by 12 places to 101st, as a result of capital reforms.

Specifically, Austria made starting a business easier by reducing the minimum capital requirement, which in turn reduced the paid-in minimum capital requirement, and by lowering notary fees. 

Despite that improvement, the report shows that 100 countries in the world make it easier to start a business than Austria, including Sierra Leone, Liberia and Timor.  

Austria is in good company, however, as Germany fares even worse with 114th place, and the Czech Republic is only marginally better in 110th position.

Austria's best area was in contract enforcement, where it comes in at fifth place worldwide, showing that the country's court systems are very effective - behind Singapore, Iceland, Korea and Luxembourg.

Other areas where Austria is worse than the European average include construction permits (78th place), getting credit (52nd) and taxes - a dismal 72nd position.

Getting credit is an area where Austria has fared worse, declining from 45th to 52nd place.

The report found that as a whole, governments the world over had implemented a range of reforms over the past year to improve business conditions. Sub-Saharan Africa carried out the largest number of business reforms - 75 in total.  



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