New Zealand topped the list of 190 countries on the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business 2020 index, followed by Singapore. China and India made to the top 10 list of countries that improved their respective business environments.

According to the World Bank, Singapore companies spent only 49 hours a year in paying taxes, compared to 696 hours spent by the worst-performing countries.

Despite the trade war, China has made to the top 10 improved list on the index for the second consecutive year. Also, China climbed to the 31st spot in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business 2020 ranking, moving up 15 places. China beat France on the index. 

World Bank Group President David Malpass said in a statement, “Removing barriers facing entrepreneurs generates better jobs, more tax revenues and higher incomes, all of which are necessary to reduce poverty and raise living standards.” 

India is on the top 10 improved list on the index for the third time in a row. The country has created a conducive environment for business by abolishing filing fees, reducing time and cost of seeking construction permits and making trade easier with port enhancements. In addition, it has established a better electronic platform for submitting documents.

India jumped 14 places to 63rd spot in the ranking. 

According to the World Bank study, other countries with improved business environments were the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Togo, Bahrain, Tajikistan, Pakistan, Kuwait and Nigeria. 

The World Bank studies are focused on 10 areas of business activity in 190 countries. The best performers on the index demonstrate robust business regulation with high transparency.