• Annual index by TMF Group ranks 95 countries according to regulatory and compliance regimes
  • Chile named 37th most complex country to do business in regards to regulation and compliance, improving from 19th place in 2014, with developments in transparency and digitalization
  • Five Latin American countries rank in the top 10, making the region the most complex to do business in from a regulatory and compliance perspective, followed by Asia

Santiago, Chile, 16 February 2016 – Chile has been named one of the least complex nations in South America for multinational companies to stay compliant with corporate regulation and legislation, according to TMF Group's Global Benchmark Complexity Index 2015, primarily due to efforts in streamlining regulatory processes and promoting transparency.

The far-reaching annual study by TMF Group, a leading global provider of high value business services to clients operating and investing internationally, ranked 95 jurisdictions across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Americas according to how complex they are to do business in from a regulatory and compliance perspective. View full report.

Cristian de la Cerda, Managing Director for Chile at TMF Group, explains: "Chile has been strengthening and maintaining its efforts to be an attractive country for investment. There have been significant advances in digital connectivity, as well as a more transparent and non-discriminatory legal framework. Further enhancing competitiveness, Chile has also achieved new regional and multilateral trade agreements."

Promoting business simplification has become increasingly critical for Chile and its regional peers, as the decline in prices for copper and other raw materials increases the need for foreign direct investment.

Latin America, however, lags the rest of the world when it comes to reducing regulatory complexity. Argentina is the world's most complex jurisdiction for regulation and compliance, according to TMF's index, followed closely by Colombia (3rd) Mexico (6th) Bolivia (7th) and Brazil (10th). Multinational corporations operating in most of these markets must make large investments in time and manpower in order to navigate what is often a dense and poorly-defined regulatory environment.

Chile, on the other hand, has made strides towards friendlier business practices. The country is also one of the most advanced in Latin America for controlling corruption, which is essential in creating a level corporate playing field.

"The tax framework in Chile is competitive and highly computerized, furthermore business procedures are clear and well known. For example, establishing a new business (SMEs in particular) can be completed in just one day. Still, knowledge of the laws, regulations, local requirements and processes is vital for companies looking to operate in Chile," added Mr. de la Cerda

Other Latin American neighbors who have fared better in the rankings include Paraguay (29th), Ecuador (40th), and Uruguay (55th). The next most complex region for business compliance is Asia, with three countries in the top 10, including Indonesia (2nd), China (5th) and Thailand (9th).

According to experts at TMF Group, many of the most complex jurisdictions share certain characteristics not linked to a specific region. With the exception of China and the UAE (4th in the rankings) all jurisdictions in the top ten have a civil rather than common law-based legal system. In general terms, the development of these systems have been plagued by limited investment and the lack of necessary legal infrastructure to support a robust corporate governance environment.

At the other end of the index, Ireland (95th) was ranked as the least complex place to do business, largely due to its common law framework, stable political environment, strong regulatory framework and pro-business attitude.

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