Rwanda is considered as the second best place to do business in Africa, according to World Bank Doing Business rankings.

The East African country scored 56th out of 190 countries in the 2017 report released on Tuesday evening.

In Africa, Rwanda is ranked the second easiest place to do business, behind Mauritius, which ranked the first in Africa and 49th globally.

The top five countries in Sub-Saharan Africa are Mauritius ranked 49, down from 32 last year, Rwanda at 56 from 62 last year, Morocco 75 from 68 last year, Botswana 72 from 71 last year, and South Africa at 73 from 74 last year.

Sub-Saharan Africa economies stepped up the pace of reform activity, according to the report, with 37 economies undertaking a total of 80 business reforms in the past year, an increase of 14 percent from the previous year.

However, 13 economies in the region stipulate additional hurdles for women entrepreneurs.

“The overarching goal of Doing Business is to enable entrepreneurship, for women and men, particularly in low and middle income countries. That governments around the world are taking up the challenge of improving the business climate, to enable job creation, is worth celebrating and we look forward to continue recording the successes we have seen this past year in the years to come,” said Rita Ramalho, Manager of the Doing Business project.

The quick growth in Rwanda with significant progress across all the key sectors is characterised with progress attributed to transparency, accountability and strategic channelling of investments in the right direction to maximise impact.

The country has achieved significant improvements specifically in the service industry ranked 2nd in the world, in credit financing and now 4th globally on registration of property.

It is also commended for making trading across borders easier by removing the mandatory pre-shipment inspection for imported products; it also made enforcing contracts easier by introducing an electronic case management system for judges and lawyers.

Francis Gatare, the Chief Executive Officer of the Rwanda Development Board, said, “Rwanda over the past few years has focused on optimising the service industry and capitalising on investment opportunities that promote long term sustainable growth.”

He noted that Rwanda continues to harness the role of the private sector in accelerating economic growth to make the country even much easier in conducting business.

Meanwhile, the report also introduced a gender dimension that measures equality of ownership between men and women in registration, ownership and rights to business.

From the reports’ observation, Rwanda features all the three elements for both men and women, acknowledging that Rwanda has a gender equality principle that provides for the minimum of 30 percent quota for women in all decision-making positions.