Ireland is the least complex country in the world for businesses to stay compliant with corporate regulation and legislation, according to a new study.

The annual TMF Group’s Global Benchmark Complexity Index 2015 shows Ireland has risen above Hong Kong and Jersey in the last year.

The study ranked 95 jurisdictions across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and the Americas according to how complex they are to do business in from a regulatory and compliance perspective. 

Ireland came last in the Complexity Index in 2015 (95th place), highlighting its position as the least complex country for business compliance ahead of the British Virgin Islands (94th) and Latvia (93rd).

One of the main reasons cited for Ireland’s strong performance was the introduction of a new Companies Act designed to reduce red tape and business complexity in the country.

The act reduced the minimum number of directors of a private company limited by shares to one from two and stated companies have no requirement to convene AGMs.

Other contributory factors included a stable political environment, the only English-speaking member of the euro zone, a highly educated workforce, and a strong legal and common law framework.

2015 was the third year in which Ireland was ranked in the top three of the least complex places in the world to do business, finishing ahead of both the United Kingdom (74th) and United States (56th).

Commenting on the ranking, Managing Director of TMF Group Ireland Ronan Reilly said: “The new Companies Act has been transformational and put clear blue water between Ireland and other competing jurisdictions.”

Meanwhile, at the other end of the spectrum Argentina has been ranked as the most complex country for multinational enterprises to do business from a regulatory and compliance perspective for the third year running.

The country is followed by Indonesia, Columbia, UAE, and China for complexity.