Starting a Business in China

When entrepreneurs draw up a business plan and try to get under way, the first hurdles they face are the procedures required to incorporate and register the new firm before they can legally operate. Economies differ greatly in how they regulate the entry of new businesses. In some the process is straightforward and affordable. In others the procedures are so burdensome that entrepreneurs may have to bribe officials to speed up the process or may decide to run their business informally.

Analysis shows that burdensome entry regulations do not increase the quality of products, make work safer or reduce pollution. Instead, they constrain private investment; push more people into the informal economy; increase consumer prices and fuel corruption. The data on starting a business is based on a survey and research investigating the procedures that a standard small to medium –size company needs to complete to start operations legally. This includes obtaining all necessary permits and licenses and completing all required inscriptions, verifications and notifications with authorities to enable the company to formally operate. Procedures are recorded only where interaction is required with an external party.

It is assumed that the founders complete all procedures themselves unless professional services (such as by a notary or lawyer) are required by law. Voluntary procedures are not counted, nor are industry–specific requirements and utility hook-ups. Lawful shortcuts are counted. It is assumed that all in formation is readily available to the entrepreneur, that there has been no prior contact with officials and that all government and nongovernment entities involved in the process function without corruption.

The World Bank