Singapore, Denmark, U.S. are the best places to do business: EIU

Singapore topped the list on the Economist Intelligence Unit’s business environment ranking.

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Singapore, Denmark and U.S. are the best places in the world to conduct business, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit business environment ranking.

“Singapore will remain the best geography in the world to do business, as it has for the past 16 years,” EIU’s Country Forecast Manager and Europe analyst, Prianthi Roy, told CNBC.

Factors driving the Southeast Asian nation’s place as a premier business destination is its political stability and the government’s focus on helping domestic private-sector companies upgrade technologically, she said.

The EIU’s ranking assesses the attractiveness of doing business across 82 countries and territories, and is measured based on indicators such as inflation, cost of living, economic growth, and fiscal policies. 

The gauge also offers insights to which economies are better placed for growth than others, and an “effective way to identify where an uptick in investment spending may soon be coming,” said EIU’s analysts.

Top 10 economies

Behind Singapore are Denmark and the U.S., which took the second and third spots respectively.

Denmark, with its “solid macroeconomic fundamentals” and high quality transport and digital infrastructure lends itself as one of the world’s most attractive business locations, Roy said.

Market opportunities will remain favorable in the U.S., especially with few restrictions to foreign trade and investment in the U.S., she added.

“Singapore, Denmark and the U.S. are projected to have the best business environments over the next five years,” the report showed.

Germany and Switzerland placed fourth and fifth, while Canada, Sweden, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Finland make up the rest of the top 10 best places in the world to do business.

“These are all advanced economies and long-standing strong performers in our index, so tend to be safe bets for investments,” the report stated, but cautioned that both headline and per-capita GDP growth rates are likely to remain stable and relatively slow.

Countries making the biggest improvements

Some notable “big improvers” that scored well in the index were countries like Greece, Qatar and India.

Greece saw the biggest improvement in business climate in the EIU’s index due to the reforms brought about by a pro-business government, the report showed.

Free market reforms promised by Argentina’s President Javier Milei, aimed at boosting private enterprise and attract foreign investment, propelled the country’s sharp improvement in rankings to the second most improved business environment.

“India is the only single-country market that offers a potential scale comparable to that of China,” the report said, adding that the country’s young demographic profile bodes well for its labor force and future demand. India ranked third on the list of most improved business environments.