SYDNEY, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- Despite uncertain economic conditions and a tightening of global lending, the business environment has continued to improve dramatically across the Asia-Pacific region according to a new report released Thursday in the Papua New Guinea capital Port Moresby.
Conducted by the APEC Policy Support Unit, the analysis found a 7.3 percent improvement in business conditions across the 21 member economies over the past two years.
Officials said a five-pronged initiative, aimed at making it easier to get credit, start a business, deal with construction permits, enforce contracts and trade across borders, was a major contributor to the region's advances.
"APEC region officials' efforts to raise the quality of their regulations are steadily making it cheaper and more efficient to do business in the Asia-Pacific," senior analyst with the APEC Policy Support Unit and the report's co-author, Carlos Kuriyama, explained.
"Getting credit is the area where APEC has had the biggest business environment breakthrough, driven by stronger legal rights and credit information systems," Kuriyama noted.
"The average availability of credit information in the region increased from about 74 percent to over 77 percent of adults."
One of the areas which saw a huge uptick was new enterprises.
New businesses in the APEC region rose 11.8 percent, with set up times falling by an average of three fewer days.
Trading across borders also shot up by 6.5 percent with faster processing and e-platforms helping to improve international transactions.
"Collaboration across APEC economies to improve their ease of doing business has achieved good results so far," said Kuriyama.
"The move in the APEC region towards smarter, more modernized regulations is timely as digital development creates new avenues for businesses to engage in cross-border trade, including small and micro enterprises with limited resources."
"Sustained reform and capacity building activities in APEC that focus on qualitative aspects of regulation like sustainability are critical to ensuring the momentum of business development and trade in the region at this challenging juncture."
Cover photo: VCG