In a way, digitization is old hat. E-mails turned 45 on September 30, 2016. In 1997, 4.1m Germans were online; today the figure is 58m. Growing up in today’s world, it is impossible to imagine being without a smartphone. But not having a landline phone or not owning a car? No problem.
49% of Ukrainian SMEs said they were inspected by a government body in 2015. These inspections took up to 14 days per year for a business on average, which means that businesses spent around 2 weeks of their operation time on dealing with the officials.
Bulgaria’s population is aging and shrinking. Labor Market demands are shifting quickly from low skill to high skill. Twenty percent of Bulgaria’s youth are NEEDS (not in employment or education). Almost 50% of Roma in the country have primary or lower education.
In 2015, the USAID Leadership in Economic Governance (LEV) Program conducted a large-scale survey of small and medium enterprises (Annual Business Climate Assessment in Ukraine). One of the features of this survey is that entrepreneurs themselves identify obstacles to doing business and reforms they expect from the state.
We believe that if the state ceases to intervene in the pricing mechanisms, the profitability of enterprises will improve, investments will increase and administrative burden on business will be reduced. On the other hand, there are certain risks that were the reason why the government abolished this regulation in the form of experiment.
Ranked 20th in the 2016 World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index, Lithuania has outstripped its closest neighbours Latvia and Poland. Yet, possibilities of forging ahead as one of the most business-friendly economies are not fully exhausted.
If the needs of economy are long ignored, the ability to create resources necessary for maintaining or even improving our standards of living will be lost. The politicians – whether the ones in Slovakia, in foreign countries or in institutions of EU – should finally acknowledge several basic priorities vital for business.
The Entrepreneurs Association of Slovakia has already submitted a document to the Minister of Economy which includes 40 bureaucratic absurdities that were previously identified by both entrepreneurs and the lay public under the patronage of the Bureaucratic Nonsense of the Year project.
I can already see the ironic grins, since I suggest creating new bureaucracy to fight bureaucracy. By applying this suggestion, however, no new administration would be created. The existing one would be reorganized so there would be a clearly assigned authority and responsibility to accomplish this important priority.