SYDNEY, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- Stability in government and updating of legislative reforms have seen Papua New Guinea (PNG) shoot up the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index.
"Our country's ease of doing business is independently measured by the World Bank, it is a good story and if we look at the last two years, our ease of doing business has improved about 36 placings," PNG's Investment Promotion Authority (IPA) chairman Leon Buskens said on Monday.
"In 2016 PNG ranked 145 out of 189 economies. It was an improvement from prior years which was due to legislative changes and our ranking improved to 119 by 2017 and this year we further improved further 10 places to 109," he said.
Across the rest of the South Pacific region, Samoa came in at 87th place, Tonga reached 89th, Vanuatu ranked 90th and Fiji registered 101st.
According to Buskens, one of the major reasons for the improvement in conditions has been the inclusion of information communication technology (ICT) to register companies with the IPA.
"Using ICT as a platform, to make it cost effective, now we are open 24 hours 7 days a week online," he said.
This monumental change has allowed businesses from inside and outside of the country to register with the IPA in about 10 minutes.
Previously, Buskens said the process would have taken up to 51 days.
"Reviews of a lot of our policies are long outdated, policy laws for example, the National Investment Policy we have not reviewed that for the last two decades," he said.
"We are going through that and again this is to stimulate growth, the other is the Associations Act also going through the process of strengthening that."