Five states have emerged winners in the World Bank Regulatory Business Reforms following their impressive progress in development.The states include Ogun, Ekiti, Cross River, Niger and Rivers.
This is contained in a new World Bank Report christened, “Doing Business in Nigeria 2014” and released Monday in Abuja.
The report showed that the states towered above the remaining 30 states benchmarked for the exercise in achieving giant strides in business reforms in their domains.
The document benchmarked 35 states in addition to Abuja using four performance indicators, which include starting a business, dealing with construction permits, registering property and enforcing contracts.
According to the findings, 22 states had improved in at least one of the areas measured since the last benchmarking exercise in 2010. At end of the assessment, Ogun, one of the lowest ranked overall performers in both 2008 and 2010 emerged one of the reformist states in 2014.
“A concerted effort across federal and state authorities and in collaboration with the private sector helped improve Ogun on three of the four indicators benchmarked,” the World Bank report showed.
The report also showed that most of the reforms documented focused on streamlining the complexity and cost of regulatory processes.
The bank said one-stop centers had improved the time to issue building permit in Rivers, Delta and Oyo, dropping by 50 per cent or more since 2010, while findings also showed that the case management provisions introduced by Ekiti’s new civil procedures rule in 2011 helped reduce average trial time by nine months.
“Data shows that states continue to digitalise land records and introduce geographical information systems making property registration more secure and efficient,” the report showed.
World Bank, however, said challenges still persist as no single state ranked at the top on all indicators, noting that Abuja, FCT and Lagos are among the top performing states on the ease of starting a business but ranked in the bottom two positions on the ease of dealing with construction permits.
It also said Sokoto and Osun ranked two and three in dealing with construction permits but 30 and 33 respectively in starting a business, noting that Nigerian entrepreneurs face different regulatory hurdles, depending on where they establish their businesses.
Meanwhile, the Doing Business Report is the third in the series of a World Bank Group sub-national reports.
Source : SunOnline