Strategy Note /

Doing Business: EM improving in general

    Hasnain Malik
    Hasnain Malik

    Strategy & Head of Equity Research

    Tellimer Research
    27 October 2019
    Published byTellimer Research

    The latest annual World Bank Ease of Doing Business survey, published in full last week, provides useful data points for structural economic reform momentum, if not near-term economic growth or the performance of asset prices. We highlight the following four observations:

    (1) Jordan, Pakistan and Saudi saw their score improve by over 10% compared to the last annual survey.

    (2) China, India, Jordan, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi, have seen their score improve by over 15% cumulatively over the last five years.

    (3) Lebanon, Poland, and Taiwan have seen their score deteriorate in the last five years. 

    (4) Georgia, South Korea, Malaysia, Mauritius, Taiwan and the UAE all rank in the top 20 countries (out of 190 in total) in the most recent survey.


    Latest country rankings and change in score over the last five years

    Source: WB


    The World Bank has been scoring countries for 17 years, with some changes in method and sample size along the way. While there is a legitimate criticism that the specific scores may not reflect ground realities for those trying to run businesses (i.e. the absolute scores may not tally with practical experience), the data set is still useful, in our view, because it is objective and wide-ranging (i.e. as a measure of one country relative to another and relative to its own history).