26 May 2014

Apparently many Australians like doing business in New Zealand because they feel familiar with customer expectations, they have connections with New Zealand and they see strong growth prospects. These were among findings in the 2014 Australian International Business Survey released last week. The survey is assessed as “one of the most comprehensive investigations into Australian international business activity to be conducted in more than a decade….”

The data was provided by more than 1,600 Australian businesses operating in more than 120 countries. It reflects the experience of businesses operating offshore and enables a comparison of conditions experienced in seven of Australia’s top ten markets: China, India, Indonesia, Japan, New Zealand, United Kingdom and the United States.

Although 62% of respondents said that they felt business conditions in New Zealand were much the same as in Australia, 14% reported finding New Zealand a more difficult market and 1% said New Zealand was the most difficult market in which they operated. Perhaps unsurprisingly, 24% said that it was easier or much easier to do business in New Zealand than in Australia. What seems extraordinary is that 13% said that it was easier or much easier to do business in China than in Australia, and 14% indicated that it was about the same.

The most recent  World Bank Ease of Doing Business Survey ranks New Zealand overall as the third most easy country in which to do business (after Hong Kong and Singapore), Australia is 11th  and China is 96th.

The World Bank is concerned with regulatory efficiency in measuring the ease of doing business.  The criteria relate to obstacles in –

  • Starting a business
  • Dealing with construction permits
  • Getting electricity
  • Registering property
  • Getting credit
  • Protecting investors
  • Paying taxes
  • Trading across borders
  • Resolving insolvency