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12 September 2018
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3 minutes

Philippines ranked among the most complex places in APAC for accounting and tax compliance

Philippines jumps 9 places from 2017 ranking to be 16th in the world, as ranked in the TMF Group’s Financial Complexity Index 2018. Here’s what you need to know about the country’s financial compliance environment.

It may be seen as Asia’s new economic powerhouse, transforming under fast-paced GDP growth, but the Philippines could be getting more complex as it grows - according to TMF Group’s second annual Financial Complexity Index 2018.

The Asian star is ranked as the 16th most financially complex country for businesses in the annual index, jumping up nine places from 2017, but remaining the fourth most complex in the Asia Pacific region.

The 5 most complex jurisdictions in Asia Pacific for financial compliance 

Global ranking Jurisdiction
1 China
2 Vietnam
3 India
4 Philippines
5 Thailand

China is the most complex place in the world for accounting and tax compliance, followed by Brazil, Turkey, Italy and Argentina. We ranked 94 jurisdictions across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and the Americas; 1 being most complex through to 94 the least complex. For a second year, the Cayman Islands came in as the least complex place for compliance from an accounting and tax perspective.

Philippines remains attractive to foreign investors in Asia Pacific

Commenting on the rankings, TMF Philippines Managing Director Sharon Yam said: “Despite some well-documented issues with doing business in the Philippines – such as red tape and multiple separate filing requirements – it is still an important investment destination for many businesses looking to get a foot in the door of Asia Pacific.

“The government is targeting the creation of more than 12 million new jobs through spending on infrastructure and pushing for greater investment from China, Japan, Russia and the Middle East. It’s important to remember the Philippines government has introduced reforms recently to make it easier to pay taxes, and we expect the reforms towards increased transparency and ease of doing business to continue as the economy continues to shine.”

TMF Group’s Head of APAC Paolo Tavolato added: “In this era, it’s no longer nice to be doing business in Asia – it’s essential. And with so many of the big economies at the top end of this Financial Complexity Index, it’s the smaller, growing nations that are proving most attractive for investment in APAC. In fact, the World Bank predicts the Philippines will remain one of the region’s top performers with an expected growth rate of 6.9% through 2018, driven by private consumption and investment.”

About TMF Group

TMF Group helps its clients operate internationally and ‘belong’ wherever they are in the world. We do this by making sure they are properly set up to do business in any country and compliant with local and international regulations.

Our work includes helping companies of all sizes with business services such as HR and payroll, accounting and tax, corporate secretarial, global governance and administration services for structured finance, private equity and real estate investments. We have more than 7,000 in-country experts in over 80 jurisdictions worldwide.

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