Doing Business in Central America: Have We Improved?

Guatemala was the only country in the region that improved its position in the global ranking monitoring businessmen's conditions for doing business, while the others went backwards.

Friday, October 25, 2019

The World Bank released the results of the Doing Business 2020 report, which measures the regulations that favor or restrict the development of business activity in different countries. Doing Business consists of quantitative indicators on business regulations and the protection of private property rights, comparable in 190 economies.

A rating close to 1 means that regulations in the field of business facilitate the opening of companies and their activities.

Situation in Central America:

After having reported in the 2020 report a degradation in the global ranking when going from position 61 to 67, in the last report Costa Rica worsened, falling from position 67 to 74. However, the country continues to be the best positioned country in Central America.
See: "Costa Rica in the Doing Business 2020 report"

Panama is the second ranked country in the region, because although the global ranking registered negative variations with respect to the previous year's report, falling from 79th to 86th place, it is the economy that follows Costa Rica's footsteps.
See: "Panama in the Doing Business 2020 report"

After the great progress made by El Salvador between 2016 and 2017, when it rose from 95th to 73rd position, the 2020 report reports a decline from 85th to 91st position in the global index.
See "El Salvador in the Doing Business 2020 report"

Guatemala is the fourth best positioned economy in the region, ranking 96th in the global ranking. This was the only economy that improved, since in the 2019 report it was ranked in box 98.
See "Guatemala in the Doing Business 2020 report"

The Dominican Republic was another of the countries to fall back in the global ranking, from 102 in the 2019 report to 115 in the 2020 edition.
See "Dominican Republic in the Doing Business 2020 report"

Honduras continued to decline in the global ranking, given that in the most recent report it ranked 133, which is equivalent to a drop of 12 places from the position it was in in the last report, reflecting the deterioration in the conditions for doing business in this country.
See "Honduras in the Doing Business 2020 report"

Nicaragua is the worst positioned country in Central America, as in the 2020 report it ranked 142nd. Its fall of ten positions in the latest ranking is complemented by the decline from 127th to 131st position recorded in the 2018 report.
See "Nicaragua in the Doing Business 2020 report"

See regional fact sheet.

More on this topic

How Easy is to do Business in Central America?

October 2018

Costa Rica and Panama are the economies of the region where businessmen find it easier to develop business, followed by El Salvador and Guatemala, and in the last two places, Honduras and Nicaragua.

The World Bank announced the results of the Doing Business 2019 report, which measures the regulations that favor or restrict the development of business activity in different countries.

Central America: Which country is best to do business in?

November 2017

Find out in which country of the region it is easiest to obtain a construction permit, where the least taxes are paid, where a creditor is more likely to recover a debt, and where minority investors are most protected.

The World Bank has presented its Doing Business 2018 report, which measures regulations that favor or restrict business activities. Doing Business is made up of quantitative indicators measuring business regulations and the protection of private property rights that are comparable in 190 economies over time.

Doing Business 2012 Confirms Latin America Lags Behind

October 2011

Latin America is barely ahead of Africa in quality standards and conditions affecting local businesses.

As a region, Central America, is located in the second half of the list entitled ‘Doing Business 2012’.

Doing Business 2012, a report by the World Bank this year added a new area of analysis, which is the ease of obtaining an electrical connection, along with the traditional items which include: ease of starting a business, management of construction permits, registering property , getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, cross border trade, enforcing contracts, and insolvency resolution.

Doing business 2008: Guatemala

April 2008

This report presents the summary Doing Business indicators for Guatemala along with the comparator economies selected. The data used for this country profile come from the Doing Business database and are summarized in graphs and tables. This report allows a comparison of the economies not only with one another but also with the best practice economy for each indicator.

The best-practice economies are identified by their position in each indicator as well as their overall ranking and by their capacity to provide good examples of business regulation to other economies. These best-practice economies do not necessarily rank number 1 in the topic or indicator, but they are in the top 5.

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