Monday, March 23, 2009

Canada Third Most "Business Friendly" Country

Canada Moves Up To 3rd Spot

In it's fourth annual 'Best Countries for Business' rankings, Forbes rates Canada as number three which is a rise of four positions from last year.

Forbes says:

The economic downturn that's swept the globe has crushed financial markets, exploded unemployment and shaken confidence in the banking system.

The disaster isn't shared equally, though. Some countries are in a much better position than others to rebound from the current malaise by attracting entrepreneurs, investors and workers.

Who are they? Our fourth annual Best Countries for Business ranking looks at business conditions in 127 economies. Topping the list for 2009: Denmark, for a second straight year, takes the No. 1 spot. The U.S. is up two spots to No. 2, Canada is up four spots to No. 3, Singapore is up four to No. 4 and New Zealand is up seven to No. 5.

Big movers included New Zealand (No. 5, up seven spots), followed by Jordan (No. 33, up 28), Australia (No. 8, up five), United Arab Emirates (No. 46, up 28) and Malaysia (No. 25, up 13).

This is not a tally of economies with high gross domestic product growth, or low unemployment. The goal is to quantify for entrepreneurs and investors the often-qualified information about dynamic economies and what they would consider desirable conditions for business.

Personal freedoms play a big part -- it's hard to start a company or find talented employees under totalitarian regimes and military juntas. So we include measures of the right to participate in free and fair elections, freedom of expression and organization.

Taking care of investors, with laws assuring recourse for minority shareholders in cases of corporate misdeeds, is also important. As a barometer for corruption, Transparency International examines the number and frequency of incidents where corporate assets are misused for personal gain.

Overall rank: 3
GDP per capita: $40,200
GDP, real growth rate: 0.7%
Population (millions): 33.2
Trade balance as % of GDP: 1.9%
Federal budget balance as % of GDP: 0.2%

Trade and budget surpluses, tax relief from the current administration and conservative lending practices of its banks have left the U.S.' northern neighbor in an enviable position amid global tumult. Reignited demand for commodities in the face of U.S. inflation could help reverse export declines in this gold- and oil-sands-rich nation.


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