The Forbes financial magazine from the United States has labelled Ireland as the best country in the world for business in its latest rankings.
Ireland reached the coveted first spot in the magazine’s rankings of 145 nations for the first time since the annual list began being compiled in 2006.
Ireland moved up from its number six ranking last year on the strength of improved scores on monetary freedom and the availability of a highly educated workforce.
New Zealand drops to number two, although it remains a fast growing economy with its GDP up 2.5% last year. Hong Kong ranks third for the second straight year, although economic growth has slowed there recently. Two Scandinavian countries, Denmark and Sweden, complete the top five.
Forbes determined the ‘Best Countries for Business’ by grading 145 nations on 11 different factors: property rights, innovation, taxes, technology, corruption, freedom (personal, trade and monetary), red tape, investor protection and stock market performance.