KATHMANDU, Dec 20: Nepal has been ranked in 118th position — out of 144 nations — on annual list of the best countries for business in 2015, according to the 'Best Countries of Business in 2015' published by the Forbes magazine.
In South Asia, Nepal is behind Sri Lanka (91), India (97), Bhutan (101) and Pakistan (103) but ahead of Bangladesh (121).
The Forbes' ranking of the 'Best Countries of Business in 2015' is calculated on the basis of trade freedom, monetary freedom, property rights, innovation, technology, red tape, investor protection, corruption, personal freedom and tax burden.
Nepal is almost at the bottom of the ranking. Innovation, technology, monetary freedom, trade freedom and corruption, coupled with political uncertainty and a difficult business climate affected the country's overall ranking, according to the report.
Likewise, the report further states that Nepal is among the poorest and least developed countries (LDCs) in the world with one in almost four citizens living below the poverty line. "Nepal is also heavily dependent on remittances which amount to as much as 22 percent to 25 percent equivalent to the gross domestic product (GDP). Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy, providing a livelihood for more than 70 percent and accounting for a little over one-third of the economy," the report states.
Additional challenges to Nepal's growth include its landlocked geographic location, persistent power shortages, underdeveloped transportation infrastructure, civil strife and labour unrest, and its susceptibility to natural disaster, the report further clarified. "Lack of political consensus in the past several years has delayed national budgets and prevented much-needed economic reform, although the government passed a full budget in 2013 and 2014."
Denmark tops the list, followed by New Zealand, Norway, Ireland and Sweden, according to the report that has placed Chad at the bottom of the list.
2. New Zealand
Published on: My Republica (December 20, 2015)