Business in Africa to change

The International Finance Corporation has recently issued its annual assessment of how easy or difficult it is to do business around the world. Africa comes out as the hardest, but it is beginning to change.

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In the past there has really only been one way to describe the climate towards business almost anywhere in Africa - distinctly hostile. Mountains of forms to fill in, complex, sometimes contradictory regulations and bored, uninterested civil servants. But, says one of the authors of this report, Sylvia Solf, change is on the way.

Sylvia Solf: 'Over the past three years this trend has been reversing and this year, two thirds of the reforms globally have been taking place in developing countries and in Africa more than half of the countries of the continent have reformed. This is really a very new development and it's a very exciting development.'

Regulations are being scrapped. One stop shops at which businesses can be registered are being set up. Many forms can now be accessed online. At the frontline of these reforms is the island of Mauritius, which is already as easy to operate in as many developed countries. Rwanda, Liberia and Burkina Faso have also made real progress to improve the climate for business.

But many other African nations, among them some of the poorest countries on earth, like Chad, Congo Brazzaville and Swaziland, have made no moves in this direction. Some, like Tanzania, have even gone backwards. Extracting bribes from businessmen to get round the obstacles may be one reason why some of the continent's leaders have failed to take the path of reform.

Martin Plaut, BBC News

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distinctly hostile

açık bir biçimde hasmane ve (iş yapması) zor

contradictory regulations

birbiriyle çelişen düzenlemeler, karışık mevzuat

civil servants

memurlar

change is on the way

durum yakında değişecek

trend has been reversing

gidişat değişmeye başladı

one stop shops

tek merkezde tüm işleri halledebildiğiniz yerler

at the frontline

burada, en büyük değişikliklere sahne olan ülke

extracting bribes

rüşvet almak

to get round the obstacles

güçlüklerin aşılması için bir yol bulmak

to take the path of reform

reform yolunu açmak