17 of 20
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17. Sweden
2009 rank: #17
2008 rank: #14

The only reform Sweden made this year was to reduce the maximum duration of fixed-term employment contracts from three years to two. That took them down three notches in the "Doing Business" ranking, which favors less rigid labor regulation.

Nonetheless, Sweden remains relatively business-friendly: starting a company involves three procedures taking 15 days, although entrepreneurs are required to have some money in the bank before they do so. Transferring property is a relatively speedy process, taking only two days.

NEXT: 18. Bahrain

Source: All data comes from "Doing Business 2009," a publication of the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation. Detailed methodological information is available at www.doingbusiness.org.
LAST UPDATE: Sep 11 2008 | 1:18 PM ET
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