Antigua & Barbuda has continued to slide downwards in the World Bank’s Global Doing Business Report and is now at 104 out of 189 countries surveyed for the 2016 edition.

In 2014, the country dropped 18 places when it ranked 89, and in the previous year the twin island state ranked 71, which was later reviewed and lowered to 83.

Points were lost in critical areas important to business. The World Bank’s annual report ranked countries using 10 different criteria.

The country’s worst areas were starting a business at 107th, and dealing with Construction Permits at 95th in the world. Registering Property fell from 112 in 2015 to 118 in 2016.

The report said regulation of construction is critical to protecting the public, but it needs to be efficient to avoid excessive constraints on a sector that plays an important part in every economy.

It further stated, “Where complying with building regulations is excessively costly in time and money, many builders opt out,” adding, “They may pay bribes to pass inspections or simply build illegally, leading to hazardous construction that puts public safety at risk. Where compliance is simple, straightforward and inexpensive, everyone is better off.”

The country was also ranked low in the area of getting credit, at 152nd in the world, two places down from the last report.

It’s in the area of paying taxes that Antigua & Barbuda is ranked the lowest, coming in at 161, two places down from 2014.

(More in today’s Daily Observer)