Conditions for doing business in Croatia are not getting any better.
In the latest annual “Doing Business” report of the World Bank, Croatia is ranked at 43rd position among 190 countries, and its rankings have worsened compared to last year due to more difficult procedures for starting companies and additional taxes and fees. Last year, according to updated data of the World Bank, Croatia was ranked 39th among 189 countries, reports Jutarnji List on October 26, 2016.
According to this year’s report, Croatia had the largest decline in the category of establishing companies and paying taxes, while progress had been made in protecting minority shareholders. In the category of cross-border trade, Croatia received maximum 100 points, just like last year, which means it was among the most successful countries of the world in that category.
Due to an increase in notary fees necessary for starting a business, Croatia dropped in that category from 83rd to 95th position. Payment of taxes has been made more complicated by the introduction of public broadcaster fees and cancellation of the decision on reduction of fees for Croatian Chamber of Economy for new companies. Thus, in the category of paying taxes and fees, Croatia declined from 38th to 49th position.
Croatia achieved its worst result in the category of issuing construction permits, where it was ranked at the 128th position; however, last year it was 129th.
New Zealand was ranked as the best country in the world for doing business, followed by Singapore, Denmark, Hong Kong, South Korea, Norway, United Kingdom, United States, Sweden and, surprisingly, Macedonia. Among Croatia’s biggest trading partners, Germany was ranked at the 17th position, Slovenia was 30th, and Italy was 50th. Of the neighbouring countries, Serbia was ranked at the 47th position, Montenegro at 51st, and Bosnia and Herzegovina at the 81st position in the world.
The latest “Doing Business 2017” report showed that the record 137 economies around the world had adopted key reforms that make it easier to establish small and medium-sized companies and do business, according to the authors of the report. The survey which covered the 12-month period up to June this year showed that developing countries had implemented more than three quarters of the total 283 reforms undertaken over the past year, with the sub-Saharan Africa accounting for more than a quarter of the implemented reforms.
Former HDZ-MOST government led by Tihomir Orešković placed great emphasis on improving business climate in the country and harshly criticized previous government for not doing enough. However, it is obvious that it did not do enough to make doing business in Croatia any easier.