Kenya has defied heightened political tension in the country to rank third in sub Saharan Africa in the World Bank Ease of Doing Business 2018 Report.
Mauritius continues to lead in Africa closely followed by Rwanda that in recent years has implemented a raft of measures aimed at enhancing the ease of doing business in the country.
Globally, Kenya has moved 12 places to position 80 out of 190 countries compared to position 92 in the 2017 report.
Commenting on the report, Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohammed said the new ranking will see Kenya improve in attracting investments in the country.
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“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.
According to Mr Mohammed the positive move has been attributed to reforms in starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, access to credit, paying taxes and trading across borders.
The World Bank Report considers factors such as getting electricity, dealing with construction permits and enforcing contracts while making its rankings.
The reports notes that 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.
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The use of online platform iTax, for filing and paying corporate income tax and the reduction of time for import documentary compliance by utilizing the single window system, which allows for electronic submission of customs entries also helped Kenya move up the Ease of Doing Business index.
New Zealand is the best country to do business while Somalia is the worst destination for anyone intending to open a business.
While the World Bank report comes as good news for Kenya, political uncertainty could threaten this development. Kenya has been on a political campaign mood for the better part of 2018. As a result the Nairobi Securities Exchange has lost a huge amount of cash as investors develop a wait-and-see approach.