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Editorial: Re-Examining Our Practices For 2012

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The International Finance Corporation, a private sector arm of the World Bank, recently released its 2011 covering nine formal sector indicators in 183 economies. This time, Liberia slipped down three positions in the World Bank Doing Business Survey, meaning the country dropped from among the top ten reformers in 2010.

Despite re-enforcing lesson on how rapid reforms could be achieved, Liberia slipped from the 152th to 155th position this time in the 2011 survey. The doing business report focuses on governments’ commitment to creating the enabling environment of doing business easily. According to the 2011 report, within the nine formal sector indicators, Liberia slipped down 7 places in starting a business from 57 in 2010 to 64 in 2011.

It recorded no change in dealing with construction permit, maintaining its 135 position obtained in 2010, but dropped 3 places in registering property from 173 in 2010 to 176 in 2011. In the category of getting credit, Liberia again slipped down 3 positions from 135 in 2010 to 138 in 2011. It also dropped 1 position in protecting investors from 146 in 2010 to 147 in 2011. With respect to Trading across borders, Liberia slipped down 1 position from 115 in 2010 to 116 in 2011.

With the foregoing information, we are beginning to wonder as to why Liberia would allow itself to return to the problems of starting a business, registering property, getting credit, as well as protecting investors and cross-border trade, among others. What could have been the problem of country maintaining its position or even moving a step further? Or is it that we are again into the normal unnecessary bureaucracies in our business transactions?

We think this latest report does not favor Liberia much, and so there’s an urgent need for re-examination of our business practices in order to remove whatever little hurdles, as a way of improving such for a change in 2012. We think we can still make and continue to climb the scale, but again, it would require a drastic reduction in the bureaucracies to do business in Liberia. And we believe those at the helm of fostering economic progress in our country are very capable to continue to work toward this goal.

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