A recent study by the Dutch professional services company TMF Group, which has been publishing the Global Business Complexity Index (GBCI) for nearly a decade, ranks Greece as the most complex country for business this year, continuing an upward trend since 2021.

Greece has consistently been seen as complex, particularly in accounting and taxation, but procedures related to human resources and payroll have become even more complicated in 2024, as the 2024 Global Business Complexity Index reveals.

The current business environment‘s complexity stems from several key factors. Firstly, compliance with numerous legislative aspects is required. TMF Group experts in Greece noted up to 31 decisions and one new law per week that businesses must adhere to. Additionally, digitization has added another layer of complexity rather than simplifying procedures.

For example, MyData, the electronic business books system, imposes multiple new deadlines across all platforms. Limited understanding of these complexities often forces foreign investors to seek third-party consultants, increasing investment costs.

“2024 will be the worst year for complexity and compliance,” say TMF Group experts in Greece, “Local accounting firms underestimated the advancement of these processes and the introduction of mandatory changes, resulting in significant delays.”

The GBCI 2024 is based on 292 indicators relating to business complexity and provides in-depth analysis of the global and local challenges impacting on the ease of doing business around the world.

In this year’s report, the US remains outside the top ten simplest countries in which to do business, moving from 68th in 2023 to 63rd in 2024. Meanwhile, the Netherlands, Denmark, the UK and Hong Kong, SAR retain their places among the ten least complex jurisdictions in which to operate.

The list of the ten most business-friendly jurisdictions has a new entry in Jamaica (70th position vs 49th place in 2023), while the Cayman Islands (79th) retains its place as the easiest jurisdiction in which to do business.