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Ease of doing business in St Lucia 2012
3/5/2012

Economy Profile:
St. Lucia© 2012 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / 
The World Bank
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Copies of Doing Business 2012: Doing Business in a More Transparent World, 
Doing Business 2011: Making a Difference for Entrepreneurs, Doing Business 
2010: Reforming through Difficult Times, Doing Business 2009, Doing Business 
2008, Doing Business 2007: How to Reform, Doing Business in 2006: Creating 
Jobs, Doing Business in 2005: Removing Obstacles to Growth and Doing Business 
in 2004: Understanding Regulations may be downloaded at 
www.doingbusiness.org.
ISBN: 978-0-8213-8833-4
E-ISBN: 978-0-8213-8834-1
DOI: 10.1596/978-0-8213-8833-4
ISSN: 1729-2638 
Printed in the United States3 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
CONTENTS
Introduction.................................................................................................................................. 4
The business environment .......................................................................................................... 5
Starting a business ..................................................................................................................... 14
Dealing with construction permits........................................................................................... 23
Getting electricity....................................................................................................................... 31
Registering property.................................................................................................................. 37
Getting credit.............................................................................................................................. 46
Protecting investors................................................................................................................... 53
Paying taxes................................................................................................................................ 63
Trading across borders .............................................................................................................. 71
Enforcing contracts .................................................................................................................... 80
Resolving insolvency.................................................................................................................. 87
Data notes ................................................................................................................................... 93
Resources on the Doing Business website .............................................................................. 984 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
INTRODUCTION
Doing Business sheds light on how easy or difficult it is 
for a local entrepreneur to open and run a small to 
medium-size business when complying with relevant 
regulations. It measures and tracks changes in 
regulations affecting 10 areas in the life cycle of a 
business: starting a business, dealing with construction 
permits, getting electricity, registering property, 
getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, 
trading across borders, enforcing contracts and 
resolving insolvency.
In a series of annual reports  Doing Business presents 
quantitative indicators on business regulations and the 
protection of property rights that can be compared 
across 183 economies, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, 
over time. The data set covers 46 economies in SubSaharan Africa, 32 in Latin America and the Caribbean, 
24 in East Asia and the Pacific,  24 in Eastern Europe 
and Central Asia, 18 in the Middle East and North 
Africa and 8 in South Asia, as well as 31 OECD highincome economies. The indicators are used to analyze 
economic outcomes and identify what reforms have 
worked, where and why.
This economy profile presents the  Doing Business
indicators for St. Lucia. To allow useful comparison, it 
also provides data for other selected economies 
(comparator economies) for each indicator. The data in 
this report are current as of June 1, 2011 (except for 
the paying taxes indicators, which cover the period 
January–December 2010). 
The Doing Business methodology has limitations. Other 
areas important to business—such as an economy’s 
proximity to large markets, the quality of its 
infrastructure services (other than those related to 
trading across borders and getting electricity), the 
security of property from theft and looting, the 
transparency of government procurement, 
macroeconomic conditions or the underlying strength 
of institutions—are not directly studied by  Doing 
Business. The indicators refer to a specific type  of 
business, generally a local limited liability company 
operating in the largest business city. Because 
standard assumptions are used in the data collection, 
comparisons and benchmarks are valid across 
economies. The data not only highlight the extent of 
obstacles to doing business; they also help identify the 
source of those obstacles, supporting policy makers in 
designing regulatory reform.
More information is available in the full report. Doing 
Business 2012 presents the indicators, analyzes their 
relationship with economic outcomes and 
recommends regulatory reforms. The data, along with 
information on ordering  Doing Business 2012, are 
available on the  Doing Business website  at 
http://www.doingbusiness.org.5 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
For policy makers  trying to improve their economy’s
regulatory environment for business, a good place to 
start is to find out how it compares with the regulatory 
environment in other economies.  Doing Business
provides an aggregate ranking on the ease of doing 
business based on indicator sets that measure and 
benchmark regulations applying to domestic small to 
medium-size businesses through their life cycle. 
Economies are ranked from 1 to 183 by the ease of 
doing business index. For each economy the index is 
calculated as the ranking on the simple average of its 
percentile rankings on each of the 10 topics included in 
the index in  Doing Business 2012:  starting a business, 
dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, 
registering property, getting credit, protecting 
investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, 
enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency. The 
ranking on each topic is the simple average of the 
percentile rankings on its component indicators (see 
the data notes for more details).
1
The aggregate ranking on the ease of doing business 
benchmarks each economy’s performance on the 
indicators against that of all other economies in the 
Doing Business sample (figure 1.1). While this ranking 
tells much about the business environment in an 
economy, it does not tell the whole story. The ranking on 
the ease of doing business, and  the underlying 
indicators, do not measure all aspects of the business
environment that matter to firms and investors or that 
affect the competitiveness of the economy. Still, a high 
ranking does mean that the government has created a 
regulatory environment conducive to operating a 
business.  
   ECONOMY OVERVIEW
Region: Latin America & Caribbean
Income category: Upper middle income
Population: 174,000
GNI per capita (US$): 4,970.00
DB2012 rank: 52
DB2011 rank: 48
Change in rank: -4
Note: See the data notes for sources and 
definitions.
                                                     
1
Except for  the ease of getting credit, for which the percentile rankings on its component indicators are weighted, the depth of credit 
information index at 37.5% and the strength of legal rights index at 62.5%.6 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
Figure 1.1 Where economies stand in the global ranking on the ease of doing business
Source: Doing Business database.7 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
For policy makers, knowing where their economy 
stands in the aggregate ranking on the ease of doing 
business is useful. Also useful is to know how it ranks 
compared with other economies and compared with 
the regional average  (figure 1.2).  The economy’s 
rankings on the topics included in the ease of doing 
business index provide another perspective  (figure 
1.3).
Figure 1.2 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of doing business 
Source: Doing Business database.8 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
Figure 1.3 How St. Lucia ranks on Doing Business topics 
Source: Doing Business database.9 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
Just as the overall ranking  on the ease of doing 
business tells only part of the story, so do changes in 
that ranking. Yearly movements in rankings can 
provide some indication of changes in an economy’s 
regulatory environment for firms, but they are always 
relative. An economy’s ranking might change because 
of developments in other economies. An economy that 
implemented business regulation reforms may fail to 
rise in the rankings (or may even drop) if it is passed 
by others whose business regulation reforms had a 
more significant impact as measured by  Doing 
Business. 
Moreover, year-to-year changes in the overall rankings 
do not reflect how the business regulatory 
environment in an economy has changed over time—
or how it has changed in different areas.  To aid in 
assessing such changes,  Doing Business 2012
introduces the distance to frontier measure.
This measure  shows the distance of each economy to 
the ―frontier,‖ a synthetic measure based on the most 
efficient practice or highest score observed for each 
Doing Business indicator  across all economies and 
years included in the  Doing Business sample since 
2005. Nine areas of business regulation are covered.
Comparing the measure for an economy at 2 points in 
time allows users to assess how much the economy’s 
regulatory environment as measured by  Doing 
Business has changed over time—how far it has moved 
toward (or away from) the most efficient practices and 
strongest regulations in areas covered by  Doing 
Business (figure 1.4). The results may show that the 
pace of change varies widely across the areas 
measured. They also may show that an economy is 
relatively close to the frontier in some areas and 
relatively far from it in others.
Figure 1.4 How far has St. Lucia come in the areas measured by Doing Business? 
Distance to frontier, 2005 and 2011
Note: For economies added to the Doing Business sample after 2005, the starting point is the year in which they were added: 2006 for 
Montenegro; 2007 for Brunei Darussalam, Liberia and Luxembourg; 2008 for The Bahamas, Bahrain and Qatar; and 2009 for Cyprus and 
Kosovo. See the data notes for more details on the distance to frontier measure.
Source: Doing Business database.10 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
The absolute values of the indicators tell another part 
of the story (table 1.1). The indicators, on their own or 
in comparison with the indicators of a good practice 
economy or those of comparator economies in the 
region, may reveal bottlenecks reflected in large 
numbers of procedures, long delays or high costs. Or 
they may reveal unexpected strengths in an area of 
business regulation—such as a regulatory process that 
can be completed with a small number of procedures 
in a few days and at a low cost. Comparison of the 
economy’s indicators today with those in the previous 
year may show where substantial bottlenecks persist—
and where they are diminishing.
Table 1.1 Summary of Doing Business indicators for St. Lucia
  Indicator
St. Lucia DB2012
St. Lucia DB2011
Antigua and Barbuda
DB2012
Dominica DB2012
Grenada DB2012
Jamaica DB2012
St. Kitts and Nevis
DB2012
St. Vincent and the 
Grenadines DB2012
Best performer globally
DB2012
Starting a Business 
(rank)
53 42 80 48 60 23 64 58 New Zealand (1)
Procedures (number) 5 5 8 5 6 6 7 7 Canada (1)*
Time (days) 15 14 21 14 15 7 19 10 New Zealand (1)
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
24.4 23.8 12.5 21.8 25.1 7.2 11.5 22.3 Denmark (0.0)*
Paid-in Min. Capital (% 
of income per capita)
0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 82 Economies (0.0)*
Dealing with 
Construction Permits 
(rank)
13 13 21 18 11 49 16 6
Hong Kong SAR, 
China (1)
Procedures (number) 7 7 10 9 8 8 11 8 Denmark (5)
Time (days) 125 125 134 165 123 145 139 112 Singapore (26)*
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
31.6 30.7 26.8 10.8 23.5 227.5 6.8 12.2 Qatar (1.1)11 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
  Indicator
St. Lucia DB2012
St. Lucia DB2011
Antigua and Barbuda
DB2012
Dominica DB2012
Grenada DB2012
Jamaica DB2012
St. Kitts and Nevis
DB2012
St. Vincent and the 
Grenadines DB2012
Best performer globally
DB2012
Getting Electricity (rank) 13 12 16 65 39 112 33 21 Iceland (1)
Procedures (number) 4 4 4 5 5 6 5 3 Germany (3)*
Time (days) 25 25 42 61 49 96 18 52 Germany (17)
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
241.0 212.6 150.1 849.7 357.8 354.6 383.5 307.9 Japan (0.0)
Registering Property 
(rank)
115 108 124 116 154 103 164 141 New Zealand (3)
Procedures (number) 8 8 7 5 8 6 6 7 Portugal (1)*
Time (days) 17 17 26 42 47 37 81 38 Portugal (1)
Cost (% of property 
value)
7.4 7.4 10.9 13.2 7.4 7.5 13.3 11.9 Slovak Republic (0.0)
Getting Credit (rank) 98 96 98 78 98 98 126 126 United Kingdom (1)*
  Strength of legal rights 
index (0-10)
8 8 8 9 8 8 7 7 New Zealand (10)*
Depth of credit 
information index (0-6)
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Japan (6)*
Public registry coverage 
(% of adults)
0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 Portugal (86.2)
Private bureau coverage 
(% of adults)
0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 New Zealand (100.0)*
Protecting Investors 
(rank)
29 28 29 29 29 79 29 29 New Zealand (1)
Extent of disclosure 
index (0-10)
4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 France (10)*12 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
  Indicator
St. Lucia DB2012
St. Lucia DB2011
Antigua and Barbuda
DB2012
Dominica DB2012
Grenada DB2012
Jamaica DB2012
St. Kitts and Nevis
DB2012
St. Vincent and the 
Grenadines DB2012
Best performer globally
DB2012
Extent of director 
liability index (0-10)
8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 Singapore (9)*
Ease of shareholder suits 
index (0-10)
7 7 7 7 7 4 7 7 New Zealand (10)*
Strength of investor 
protection index (0-10)
6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3 5.3 6.3 6.3 New Zealand (9.7)
Paying Taxes (rank) 52 48 135 73 91 172 133 73 Canada (8)
Payments (number per 
year)
32 32 57 37 30 72 36 36 Norway (4)
Time (hours per year) 92 92 207 120 140 414 203 111 Luxembourg (59)
Trading Across Borders 
(rank)
110 108 71 88 40 97 44 38 Singapore (1)
Documents to export 
(number)
5 5 5 7 5 6 5 5 France (2)
Time to export (days) 14 14 16 13 10 21 11 12
Hong Kong SAR, 
China (5)*
Cost to export (US$ per 
container)
1700 1700 1202 1340 876 1410 850 1075 Malaysia (450)
Documents to import 
(number)
8 8 5 8 5 6 5 4 France (2)
Time to import (days) 18 18 15 15 12 22 12 12 Singapore (4)
Cost to import (US$ per 
container)
2745 2745 1633 1350 2028 1420 2138 1605 Malaysia (435)
Enforcing Contracts 
(rank)
165 166 70 167 162 126 114 101 Luxembourg (1)13 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
  Indicator
St. Lucia DB2012
St. Lucia DB2011
Antigua and Barbuda
DB2012
Dominica DB2012
Grenada DB2012
Jamaica DB2012
St. Kitts and Nevis
DB2012
St. Vincent and the 
Grenadines DB2012
Best performer globally
DB2012
Time (days) 635 635 351 681 688 655 578 394 Singapore (150)
Cost (% of claim) 37.3 37.3 22.7 36.0 32.6 45.6 20.5 30.3 Bhutan (0.1)
Procedures (number) 47 47 45 47 47 35 47 45 Ireland (21)*
Resolving Insolvency 
(rank)
58 53 81 98 119 26 183 183 Japan (1)
Time (years) 2.0 2.0 3.0 4.0 3.0 1.1
no 
practice
no 
practice
Ireland (0.4)
Cost (% of estate) 9 9 7 10 25 18
no 
practice
no 
practice
Singapore (1)*
Recovery rate (cents on 
the dollar)
41.7 41.5 35.0 28.3 22.7 65.3 0.0 0.0 Japan (92.7)
Note: The methodology for the paying taxes indicators changed in Doing Business 2012; see the data notes for details. For these 
indicators, the best performer globally is the economy that has implemented the most efficient practices in its tax system and is 
not necessarily the one with the highest ranking. For more information on “no practice” marks, see the data notes for details.
* Two or more economies share the top ranking on this indicator. A number shown in place of an economy’s name indicates the 
number of economies that share the top ranking on the indicator. For a list of these economies, see the  Doing Business website 
(http://www.doingbusiness.org).
Source: Doing Business database.14 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Formal registration of companies has many 
immediate benefits for  the companies and for
business owners and employees. Legal entities can
outlive their founders. Resources are pooled as 
several shareholders join forces to start a company. 
Formally registered companies have access to 
services and institutions from courts to banks as 
well as to new markets. And their employees can 
benefit from protections provided by the law. An 
additional benefit comes with limited liability 
companies. These limit the financial liability of 
company owners to their investments, so personal 
assets of the owners are not put at risk. Where 
governments make  registration easy, more 
entrepreneurs start businesses in the formal sector, 
creating more good jobs and generating more 
revenue for the government. 
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business measures the ease of starting a 
business in an economy by recording all 
procedures that are officially required or commonly 
done in practice by an entrepreneur to start up and 
formally operate an industrial or commercial 
business—as well as the time and cost required to 
complete these procedures. It also records the 
paid-in  minimum capital that companies must 
deposit before registration (or within 3 months). 
The ranking on the ease of starting a business is 
the simple average of the percentile rankings on 
the 4 component indicators: procedures, time, cost 
and paid-in minimum capital requirement. 
To make the data comparable across economies, 
Doing Business uses several assumptions about the 
business and the procedures. It assumes that all 
information is readily available to the entrepreneur 
and that there has been no prior contact with
officials. It also assumes that all government and 
nongovernment entities involved in the process 
function without corruption. And it assumes that 
the business:
 Is a limited liability company, located in the 
largest business city.
 Conducts general commercial or industrial 
activities.
   WHAT THE STARTING A BUSINESS 
INDICATORS MEASURE
Procedures to legally start and operate a 
company (number)
Preregistration (for example, name 
verification or reservation, notarization)
Registration in the economy’s largest 
business city
Postregistration (for example, social security 
registration, company seal)
Time required to complete each procedure 
(calendar days)
Does not include time spent gathering 
information
Each procedure starts on a separate day
Procedure completed once final document is 
received
No prior contact with officials
Cost required to complete each procedure 
(% of income per capita)
Official costs only, no bribes
No professional fees unless services required 
by law
Paid-in minimum capital (% of income
per capita)
Deposited in a bank or with a notary before 
registration (or within 3 months)
 Has a start-up capital of 10 times income per 
capita.
 Has a turnover of at least 100 times income per 
capita.
 Does not qualify for any special benefits.
 Does not own real estate.
 Is 100% domestically owned.15 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Where does the economy stand today?
What does it take to start a business in  St. Lucia? 
According to data collected by Doing Business, starting 
a business there requires 5 procedures, takes 15 days,
costs 24.4% of income per capita and requires paid-in 
minimum capital of 0.0% of income per capita (figure 
2.1).
Figure 2.1 What it takes to start a business in St. Lucia
Paid-in minimum capital (% of income per capita): 0.0
Note: For details on the procedures reflected here, see the summary at the end of this chapter.
Source: Doing Business database.16 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Globally, St. Lucia stands at  53 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of starting a business (figure 
2.2). The rankings for comparator economies and the 
regional average ranking provide other useful
information for assessing how easy it is for an 
entrepreneur in St. Lucia to start a business.
Figure 2.2  How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of starting a business
Source: Doing Business database.17 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to start a business in  St. Lucia
today, data over time show which aspects of the 
process have changed—and which have not (table 2.1). 
That can help identify where the potential for 
improvement is greatest. 
Table 2.1 The ease of starting a business in St. Lucia over time
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2004 DB2005 DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 42 53
Procedures (number) n.a. n.a. 6 6 6 6 5 5 5
Time (days) n.a. n.a. 20 20 20 20 14 14 15
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
n.a. n.a. 27.9 25.9 23.7 22.6 21.8 23.8 24.4
Paid-in Min. Capital (% 
of income per capita)
n.a. n.a. 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to 
the methodology.
Source: Doing Business database.18 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the procedures, time, cost or 
paid-in minimum capital  required to start a business 
(figure 2.3). These economies may provide a model for 
St. Lucia on ways to improve the ease of starting a 
business. And changes in regional averages can show 
where  St. Lucia is keeping up—and where it is falling 
behind.
Figure 2.3 Has starting a business become easier over time? 
Procedures (number)
Time (days)19 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Cost (% of income per capita)
Paid-in minimum capital (% of income per capita)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator. In the case of paid-in minimum capital, 82 economies globally and  economies in Latin America & Caribbean
have no paid-in minimum capital.
Source: Doing Business database.20 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
Economies around the world have taken steps making 
it easier to start a business—streamlining procedures 
by setting up a one-stop shop, making procedures 
simpler or faster by introducing technology and 
reducing or eliminating minimum capital requirements. 
Many have undertaken business registration reforms in 
stages—and they often are part of a larger regulatory 
reform program. Among the benefits have been 
greater firm satisfaction and savings and more 
registered businesses, financial resources and job 
opportunities.
What business registration reforms has Doing Business
recorded in St. Lucia (table 2.2)?
Table 2.2 How has St. Lucia made starting a business easier—or not? 
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010
Business start-up was eased by making it possible to check 
availability and reserve company names online.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2005), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.21 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
STARTING A BUSINESS
What are the details? 
Underlying the indicators shown in this chapter for 
St.  Lucia is a set of specific procedures—the 
bureaucratic and legal steps that an entrepreneur 
must complete to incorporate and register a new 
firm. These are  identified by  Doing Business
through collaboration with relevant  local 
professionals and the study of laws, regulations and 
publicly available information on business entry in 
that economy. Following is a detailed summary of 
those procedures, along with the associated time 
and cost. These procedures are those that apply to 
a company matching the standard assumptions 
(the ―standardized company‖) used by  Doing 
Business in collecting the data (see the section in 
this chapter on what the indicators measure).
  STANDARDIZED COMPANY 
City: Castries
Legal Form: Private Limited Liability Company
Start-up capital: 10 times GNI per capita
Paid-in minimum capital (% of income per 
capita): 0.0
Summary of procedures for starting a business in St. Lucia—and the time and cost
No. Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete
1
Lawyer conducts name search and prepares incorporation 
documents
An attorney conducts the name search and prepares the incorporation 
documents, which include (a) the articles of incorporation; (b) the notice 
of directors; (c) the notice of the company’s registered office; (d) and 
the sworn declaration swearing that the company owner is mentally 
sound and over 18 years of age. By laws are not essential for forming 
the company but are highly recommended. They are usually filed 
together with the other documents in this procedure and are included 
in the company formation fee. The online name search system is 
currently out of service. 
2 days XCD 2325
2
Registration with the Commercial Registry
When registering the company with the Commercial Registry, the 
promoters pay an administrative fee when presenting the documents 
for registration. The Registry issues a certification of incorporation once 
the registration process is finalized.
6 days XCD 850
3
Make company seal
A company can obtain a rubber-stamp seal locally in 7 days; the cost is 
XCD 75. If a more formal embossed seal is required, it can be obtained 
from overseas in 14 days; the cost is about XCD 290.
7 days XCD 75
4
* Obtain tax payer identification number 
The competent authority is the Inland Revenue Department.
1 day  (simultaneous 
with procedure 3) 
no charge22 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
No. Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete
5
* Register as employer with social security institute 
The competent authority is the National Insurance Corporation. 
1 day  (simultaneous 
with procedure 3)
no charge
* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure.
Source: Doing Business database.23 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Regulation of construction is critical to protect the 
public. But it needs to be efficient, to avoid 
excessive constraints on a sector that plays an 
important part in every economy. Where complying 
with building regulations is excessively costly in 
time and money, many builders opt out. They may 
pay bribes to pass inspections or simply build 
illegally, leading to hazardous construction that 
puts public safety at risk. Where compliance is 
simple, straightforward and inexpensive, everyone 
is better off.
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business records the procedures, time and 
cost for a business to obtain all the necessary 
approvals to build a simple commercial warehouse 
in the economy’s largest business city, connect it to 
basic utilities and register the property so that it 
can be used as collateral or transferred to another 
entity. 
The ranking on the ease of dealing with 
construction permits is the simple average of the 
percentile rankings on its component indicators: 
procedures, time and cost.
To make the data comparable across economies, 
Doing Business uses several assumptions about the 
business and the warehouse, including the utility 
connections.
The business:
 Is a limited liability company operating in 
the construction business and located in 
the largest business city.
 Is domestically owned and operated.
 Has 60 builders and other employees.
The warehouse:
 Is a new construction (there was no 
previous construction on the land).
 Has complete architectural and technical 
plans prepared by a licensed architect.
WHAT THE DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION
PERMITS INDICATORS MEASURE
Procedures to legally build a warehouse 
(number)
Submitting all relevant documents and 
obtaining all necessary clearances, licenses, 
permits and certificates
Completing all required notifications and 
receiving all necessary inspections
Obtaining utility connections for water, 
sewerage and a fixed telephone line
Registering the warehouse after its 
completion (if required for use as collateral or 
for transfer of the warehouse) 
Time required to complete each procedure 
(calendar days)
Does not include time spent gathering 
information
Each procedure starts on a separate day
Procedure completed once final document is 
received
No prior contact with officials
Cost required to complete each procedure (% 
of income per capita)
Official costs only, no bribes
 Will be connected to water, sewerage 
(sewage system, septic tank or their 
equivalent) and a fixed telephone line. The 
connection to each utility network will be 10 
meters (32 feet, 10 inches) long.
 Will be used for general storage, such as of 
books or stationery (not for goods requiring 
special conditions).
 Will take 30 weeks to construct (excluding all 
delays due to administrative and regulatory 
requirements).24 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Where does the economy stand today?
What does it take to comply with the formalities to 
build a warehouse in  St. Lucia? According to data 
collected by Doing Business, dealing with construction
permits there requires  7 procedures, takes  125 days 
and costs 31.6% of income per capita (figure 3.1).
Figure 3.1 What it takes to comply with formalities to build a warehouse in St. Lucia
Note: For details on the procedures reflected here, see the summary at the end of this chapter.
Source: Doing Business database.25 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  13 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of dealing with construction 
permits (figure 3.2). The rankings for comparator 
economies and  the regional average ranking provide 
other useful information for assessing how easy it is for 
an entrepreneur in  St. Lucia to legally build a 
warehouse.
Figure 3.2  How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of dealing with construction 
permits
Source: Doing Business database.26 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to deal with construction permits 
in St. Lucia today, data over time show which aspects 
of the process have changed—and which have not 
(table 3.1). That can help identify where the potential 
for improvement is greatest.
Table 3.1 The ease of dealing with construction permits in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. 13 13
Procedures (number) 7 7 7 7 7 7 7
Time (days) 126 126 126 125 125 125 125
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
35.8 33.3 30.4 28.9 28.2 30.7 31.6
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to 
the methodology. For more information on “no practice” marks, see the data notes for details.
Source: Doing Business database.27 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the procedures, time or cost 
required to deal with construction permits (figure 3.3). 
These economies may provide a model for St. Lucia on 
ways to improve the ease of dealing with construction 
permits. And changes in regional averages can show 
where  St. Lucia is keeping up—and where it is falling 
behind.
Figure 3.3 Has dealing with construction permits become easier over time?
Procedures (number)
Time (days)28 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Cost (% of income per capita)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator. In cases where no data are displayed above for the economy, this indicates that the economy has received a
“no practice” mark; see the data notes for details.
Source: Doing Business database.29 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
Smart regulation ensures that standards are met while 
making compliance easy and accessible to all. 
Coherent and transparent rules, efficient processes and 
adequate allocation of resources are especially 
important in sectors where safety is at stake. 
Construction is one of them.  In an effort to ensure 
building safety while keeping compliance costs 
reasonable, governments around the world have 
worked on consolidating permitting requirements. 
What construction permitting reforms has  Doing 
Business recorded in St. Lucia (table 3.2)?
Table 3.2 How has St. Lucia made dealing with construction permits easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012
No reform.
DB2011
No reform.
DB2010
No reform.
DB2009
No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2006), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.30 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DEALING WITH CONSTRUCTION PERMITS
What are the details?
The indicators reported here for  St. Lucia are 
based on a set of specific procedures—the steps 
that a company must complete to legally build a 
warehouse—identified by  Doing Business through 
information collected from experts in construction 
licensing, including architects, construction 
lawyers, construction firms, utility service providers 
and public officials who deal with building 
regulations. These procedures are those that apply 
to a company and structure matching the standard 
assumptions used by  Doing Business in collecting 
the data (see the section in this chapter on what 
the indicators cover).
   BUILDING A WAREHOUSE
City : Castries
Estimated 
Warehouse Value :
XCD 2,380,000
The procedures, along with the associated time and 
cost, are summarized below.
Summary of procedures for dealing with construction permits in St. Lucia —and the time and 
cost
No.  Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete 
1
Obtain Health Department Approval 
Site and floor plans are submitted that show adequate drainage and 
septic tanks.
21 days XCD 250
2
Obtain Electricity Approval from Ministry of Communications and 
Works
14 days XCD 1,000
3
* Obtain Approval from Fire Department
14 days XCD 600
4
Obtain Approval from DCA's commercial committee
The committee meets every 3 weeks. BuildCo must provide copies of all 
previous approvals. The Development Control Authority (DCA) does the 
approval process for public and commercial buildings in Saint Lucia.
42 days XCD 2,200
5
Receive inspection from WASCO (water department)
17 days no charge
6
Obtain Water Connection
30 days XCD 150
7
* Obtain Fixed Telephone Line
10 days no charge
* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure.
Source: Doing Business database.31 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING ELECTRICITY
Access to reliable and affordable electricity is vital 
for businesses. To counter weak electricity supply, 
many firms in developing economies have to rely 
on self-supply, often  at a prohibitively high cost. 
Whether electricity is reliably available or not, the 
first step for a customer is always to gain access by 
obtaining a connection.
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business records all procedures required for 
a local business to obtain a permanent electricity 
connection and supply for a standardized 
warehouse, as well as the time and cost to 
complete them. These procedures include 
applications and contracts with electricity utilities, 
clearances from other agencies and the  external 
and final connection works. The ranking on the 
ease of getting electricity is the simple average of 
the percentile rankings on its component 
indicators: procedures, time and cost. To make the 
data comparable across economies, several 
assumptions are used.
The warehouse:
 Is located in the economy’s largest 
business city, in an area where other 
warehouses are located.
 Is not in a special economic zone where 
the connection would be eligible for 
subsidization or faster service. 
 Has road access. The connection works 
involve the crossing of a road or roads but 
are carried out on public land. 
 Is a new construction being connected to 
electricity for the first time. 
 Has 2 stories, both above ground, with a 
total surface of about 1,300.6 square 
meters (14,000 square feet), and is built on 
a plot of 929 square meters (10,000 square 
feet).
The electricity connection:
 Is a 3-phase, 4-wire Y, 140-kilovolt-ampere 
(kVA) (subscribed capacity) connection. 
   WHAT THE GETTING ELECTRICITY   
INDICATORS MEASURE
Procedures to obtain an electricity 
connection (number)
Submitting all relevant documents and 
obtaining all necessary clearances and permits
Completing all required notifications and 
receiving all necessary inspections
Obtaining external installation works and 
possibly purchasing material for these works
Concluding any necessary supply contract and 
obtaining final supply
Time required to complete each procedure 
(calendar days)
Is at least 1 calendar day
Each procedure starts on a separate day
Does not include time spent gathering 
information
Reflects the time spent in practice, with little 
follow-up and no prior contact with officials
Cost required to complete each procedure 
(% of income per capita)
Official costs only, no bribes
Excludes value added tax
 Is 150 meters long.
 Is to either the low-voltage or the mediumvoltage distribution network and either overhead 
or underground, whichever is more common in 
the economy and in the area where the 
warehouse is located. The length of any 
connection in the customer’s private domain is 
negligible. 
 Involves installing one electricity meter. The 
monthly electricity consumption will be 0.07 
gigawatt-hour (GWh). The internal electrical 
wiring has been completed.32 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING ELECTRICITY
Where does the economy stand today?
What does it take to obtain a new electricity 
connection in St. Lucia? According to data collected by 
Doing Business,  getting electricity there requires  4
procedures, takes 25 days and costs 241.0% of income 
per capita (figure 4.1).
Figure 4.1 What it takes to obtain an electricity connection in St. Lucia
Note: For details on the procedures reflected here, see the summary at the end of this chapter.
Source: Doing Business database.33 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING ELECTRICITY
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  13 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of getting electricity (figure 
4.2). The rankings for comparator economies and the 
regional average ranking provide another perspective 
in assessing how easy it is for an entrepreneur in  St. 
Lucia to connect a warehouse to electricity.
Figure 4.2 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of getting electricity
Source: Doing Business database.34 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING ELECTRICITY
Even more helpful than rankings for other economies 
may be the indicators underlying those rankings (table 
4.1). If obtaining a new electricity connection requires 
fewer procedures, less time or less cost in other 
economies, the practices of their utilities may provide a 
model  for  St. Lucia on ways to improve the ease of 
getting electricity. Regional and global averages on 
these indicators may provide useful benchmarks. 
Table 4.1 The ease of getting electricity in St. Lucia and comparator economies
Indicator
St. Lucia
Antigua and 
Barbuda
Dominica
Grenada
Jamaica
St. Kitts and 
Nevis
St. Vincent and 
the Grenadines
Latin America & 
Caribbean
average
Global average
Rank 13 16 65 39 112 33 21 72 ..
Procedures (number) 4 4 5 5 6 5 3 5 5
Time (days) 25 42 61 49 96 18 52 65 111
Cost (% of income per 
capita)
241.0 150.1 849.7 357.8 354.6 383.5 307.9 593.7 1,942.3
Source: Doing Business database.35 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING ELECTRICITY
What are the details? 
The indicators reported here for St. Lucia are based on 
a set of specific procedures—the steps that an 
entrepreneur must complete to get a warehouse 
connected  to electricity by the local distribution 
utility—identified by Doing Business. Data are collected 
from the distribution utility, then completed and 
verified by electricity regulatory agencies and 
independent professionals such as electrical engineers, 
electrical contractors and construction companies. The 
electricity distribution utility surveyed is the one 
serving the area (or areas) in which warehouses are 
located. If there is a choice of distribution utilities, the 
one serving the largest number of customers is 
selected.
   OBTAINING AN ELECTRICITY CONNECTION
City:
Castries
Name of Utility:
St. Lucia Electricity 
Services Ltd. (Lucelec)
The procedures are those that apply to a warehouse 
and electricity connection matching the standard 
assumptions used by Doing Business in collecting the 
data (see the section in this chapter on what the 
indicators cover). The procedures, along with the 
associated time and cost, are summarized below.
Summary of procedures for getting electricity in St. Lucia—and the time and cost
No.  Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete 
1
Submit an application for an Inspector's Certificate of Approval 
from the Ministry of Communications, Works and Transport and 
Public Utilities and await an inspection
Before applying for an electricity connection, the internal wiring should 
be inspected by an inspector from the Electrical Department of the 
Ministry of Communications, Works and Transport and Public Utilities 
(the Ministry). To apply for this certificate, the customer's licensed 
electrician (the licenses are issued by the Ministry) would need to submit 
a standard application form (which can be obtained at the Ministry free 
of charge). 
The inspector would verify whether the wiring meets the Institute of 
Electrical Engineers (IEE) standards and regulations. 
10 calendar days XCD 3,437.5
2
Submit an application for electricity connection to LUCELEC and 
await an estimate 
In order to apply for an electricity connection with LUCELEC, the 
customer needs to submit: the certificate  of internal wiring compliance 
from the Ministry, proof of ownership of the building and some form of 
identification (Passport, ID Card or Drivers License).  The application for 
the connection can be completed at the Administration Office of 
LUCELEC. 
After the application is submitted, LUCELEC’s employee will visit the 
premises to determine what is needed to make the connection and 
7 calendar days no charge36 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
No.  Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete 
whether a transformer is needed. During the visit, nobody from the 
applicant’s side needs to be on site. If a pole has to be planted on 
applicant’s property to support a transformer bank or for whatever 
reason, the customer or his representative would have to agree on its 
locations.  After some time LUCELEC will issue to the customer an 
estimate for the connection works.
3
Await completion of the external connection works by LUCELEC
Once the estimate is ready LUCELEC starts the external connection works.  
The meter is installed by LUCELEC at this point as well. 7 calendar days XCD 21,500.0
4
Pay security deposit and obtain final connection from LUCELEC
The customer has to pay a security deposit (to cover any outstanding 
bills in case the customer would close the account without paying). The 
security deposit is paid after the transformer has been installed and the 
exernal connection works are completed.  The customer is advised to 
visit one of the four offices of LUCELEC to pay the deposit, following 
which they would complete the final connection.
1 calendar day XCD 7,146.7
* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure.
Source: Doing Business database.37 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Ensuring formal property rights is fundamental. 
Effective administration of land is part of that. If 
formal property transfer is too costly or 
complicated, formal  titles might go informal 
again. And where property is informal or poorly 
administered, it has little chance of being 
accepted as collateral for loans—limiting access to 
finance.
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business records the full sequence of 
procedures necessary for a business to purchase 
property from another business and transfer the 
property title to the buyer’s name. The transaction 
is considered complete when it is opposable to 
third parties and when the buyer can use the 
property, use it as  collateral for a bank loan or 
resell it. The ranking on the ease of registering 
property is the simple average of the percentile 
rankings on its component indicators: procedures, 
time and cost.
To make the data comparable across economies, 
several assumptions about the parties to the 
transaction, the property and the procedures are 
used.
The parties (buyer and seller):
 Are limited liability companies, 100% 
domestically and privately owned.
 Are located in the periurban area of the 
economy’s largest business city.
 Have 50 employees each, all of whom are 
nationals.
 Perform general commercial activities.
The property (fully owned by the seller):
 Has a value of 50 times income per capita. 
The sale price equals the value.
 Is registered in the land registry or 
cadastre, or both, and is free of title 
disputes. 
 Is located in a periurban commercial zone, 
and no rezoning is required.
  WHAT THE REGISTERING PROPERTY 
INDICATORS MEASURE
Procedures to legally transfer title on 
immovable property (number)
Preregistration (for example, checking for liens, 
notarizing sales agreement, paying property 
transfer taxes)
Registration in the economy’s largest business 
city
Postregistration (for example, filing title with 
the municipality)
Time required to complete each procedure
(calendar days)
Does not include time spent gathering 
information
Each procedure starts on a separate day
Procedure completed once final document is 
received
No prior contact with officials
Cost required to complete each procedure 
(% of property value)
Official costs only, no bribes
No value added or capital gains taxes included
 Has no mortgages attached and has been 
under the same ownership for the past 10 
years.
 Consists of 557.4 square meters (6,000 square 
feet) of land and a 10-year-old, 2-story 
warehouse of 929 square meters (10,000 
square feet). The warehouse is in good 
condition and complies with all safety 
standards, building codes and legal 
requirements. The property will be transferred 
in its entirety.38 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Where does the economy stand today?
What does it take to complete a property transfer in St. 
Lucia? According to data collected by Doing Business, 
registering property there requires 8 procedures, takes 
17 days and costs  7.4% of the property value (figure 
5.1).
Figure 5.1 What it takes to register property in St. Lucia
Note: For details on the procedures reflected here, see the summary at the end of this chapter.
Source: Doing Business database.39 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Globally, St. Lucia stands at 115 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of registering property (figure 
5.2). The rankings for comparator economies and  the 
regional average ranking provide other useful
information for assessing how easy it is for an 
entrepreneur in St. Lucia to transfer property.
Figure 5.2 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of registering property
Source: Doing Business database.40 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to register property in  St. Lucia
today, data over time show which aspects of the 
process have changed—and which have not (table 5.1). 
That can help identify where the potential for 
improvement is greatest.
Table 5.1 The ease of registering property in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
  Indicator DB2005 DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. .. 108 115
Procedures (number) n.a. 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
Time (days) n.a. 17 17 17 17 17 17 17
Cost (% of property 
value)
n.a. 7.4 7.4 7.4 7.4 7.4 7.4 7.4
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes 
to the methodology. For more information on “no practice” marks, see the data notes for details.
Source: Doing Business database.41 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the procedures, time or cost 
required to complete a property transfer (figure 5.3). 
These economies may provide a model for St. Lucia on 
ways to improve the ease of registering property. And 
changes in regional averages can show where St. Lucia
is keeping up—and where it is falling behind.
Figure 5.3 Has registering property become easier over time?
Procedures (number)
Time (days)42 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Cost (% of property value)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator. In cases where no data are displayed above for the economy, this indicates that the economy has received a 
“no practice” mark; see the data notes for details.
Source: Doing Business database.43 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
Economies worldwide have been making it easier for 
entrepreneurs to register and transfer property—such 
as by computerizing land registries, introducing time 
limits for procedures and setting low fixed fees. Many 
have cut the time required substantially—enabling 
buyers to use or mortgage their property earlier. What 
property registration reforms has  Doing Business 
recorded in St. Lucia (table 5.2)?
Table 5.2 How has St. Lucia made registering property easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2005), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.44 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
REGISTERING PROPERTY
What are the details? 
The indicators reported here are based on a set of 
specific procedures—the steps that a buyer and 
seller must complete to transfer the property to the 
buyer’s name—identified by  Doing Business
through information collected from local property 
lawyers, notaries and property registries. These 
procedures are those that apply to a transaction 
matching the standard assumptions used by Doing 
Business in collecting the data (see the section in
this chapter on what the indicators cover). 
    STANDARD PROPERTY TRANSFER
City: Castries
Property Value: 665,517.2
The  procedures, along with the associated time and 
cost, are summarized below.
Summary of procedures for registering property in St. Lucia—and the time and cost
No.  Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete
1
* The purchaser’s lawyer conducts searches on the title at the Land 
Registry
The title search is conducted at the Land Registry under the authority of 
the Ministry of Physical Planning, Housing, Urban Renewal and Local 
Government. It is common practice for a lawyer to conduct these 
searches.
1-2 days 
(simultaneous with 
procedures 2, 3 and 
4)
EC$ 5 per parcel 
(property) 
2
* Search for encumbrances at the Registry of the High Court
This search is necessary to ascertain whether or not there are any 
judgments against the purchaser. Unless all judgments are settled, the 
transaction cannot proceed.  
1 day (simultaneous 
with procedures 1 
and 3)
EC$ 5 + EC$ 1 for 
each page copied
3
* Obtain tax clearance certificate from the Inland Revenue Authority
In order for the execution of the deed to proceed, both the seller and 
purchaser must have paid all outstanding income taxes and property 
taxes. Therefore, clearance from the Inland Revenue Authority must be 
granted. This usually takes a few days because the Revenue Authority 
scans all documents and then must send the clearance certificate to the 
land registry. 
For non-nationals, the Vendor’s Tax is 10%.
1-3 days 
(simultaneous with 
procedures 1 and 2
no cost
4
* Obtain compliance certificate from the National Insurance 
Corporation (NIC)
According to the National Insurance Corporation Act of Saint Lucia it is 
mandatory for employers to deduct from the wages of 
employees/insured persons a statutory contribution and to remit this 
sum together with the employer’s contribution to the National Insurance 
Corporation (NIC).  An unpaid contribution to NIC ranks as a privileged 
debt on the same level as state taxes without the necessity for 
1-3 days 
(simulaneous with 
procedure 3)
no cost45 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
No.  Procedure
Time to 
complete
Cost to complete
registration and therefore takes priority over the rights of other secured 
creditors such as registered mortgagees.  Therefore if an employer has 
not remitted contributions to NIC and that employer’s property is sold 
for example by a secured creditor who has put the property into 
receivership, NIC’s claim will rank above that of the secured creditor. 
5
* Lawyer prepares and executes deed of sale
Ideally, the lawyer can prepare and execute the deed in one day. 
However, this is dependent upon receiving the ―Radiation‖ document of 
discharge of the seller’s mortgage from the bank. If there are no 
mortgages attached to the property, execution of the deed can be done 
in one or two days at the most. The purchaser pays stamp duty to the 
Inland Revenue Authority, in addition to EC$ 20, which represents stamp 
duty on two additional copies at EC$ 10 per copy.
The scale of lawyers’ fees is set by the Bar Association of St. Lucia, and is 
used as a basis for the fees. A minimum flat fee of EC$ 100 is charged in 
addition to a percentage of property value. 
At the same time, the buyer and seller will pay for the stamp duty and 
the Vendor's Tax
1-2 days
Lawyer’s fees + 
Vendor’s tax + EC$ 
20
Lawyer’s fees: flat fee 
of EC$ 100 + % of 
property value, 
according to the 
following scale:
Property value:                                           
Fee:
Up to 50,000                                                 
6
* Register title deed with Land Registry
The registration fee is EC$20 for copies of the deed (one to the 
purchaser and one for the Registry to keep). Registration time depends 
on whether or not all documentation is complete and all fees and taxes 
have been paid. 
Stamp duty is paid to the Inland Revenue Authority.
Documentation required:
- Deed of sale
7-10 days
EC$ 20 registration 
fee 
7
Register new owner with the Inland Revenue Authority
A property owner is required to declare the property to the Inland 
Revenue Department within thirty (30) days of becoming the owner. This 
declaration must be a true statement of:
1. The description, Block and Parcel number, area and value of the land 
and in the case of a house it’s rental value; 
2. The mailing address and a contact number of the owner or 
representative. 
1 day No cost
* Takes place simultaneously with another procedure.
Source: Doing Business database.46 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT
Two types of  frameworks can facilitate access to 
credit and improve its allocation: credit information 
systems and the legal rights of borrowers and 
lenders in collateral and bankruptcy laws.  Credit 
information systems enable lenders to view a 
potential borrower’s financial history (positive or 
negative)—valuable information to consider when 
assessing risk. And they permit borrowers to 
establish a good credit history that will allow easier 
access to credit. Sound collateral laws enable 
businesses to use their assets, especially movable 
property, as security to generate capital—while 
strong creditors’ rights have been associated with 
higher ratios of private sector credit to GDP.
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business assesses the sharing of credit 
information and the legal rights of borrowers and 
lenders with respect to  secured transactions 
through 2 sets of indicators. The depth of credit 
information index measures rules and practices 
affecting the coverage, scope and accessibility of 
credit information available through a public credit 
registry or a private credit bureau. The strength of 
legal rights index measures the degree to which 
collateral and bankruptcy laws protect the rights of 
borrowers and lenders and thus facilitate lending. 
Doing Business uses case scenarios to determine 
the scope of the secured transactions system, 
involving a secured borrower and a secured lender 
and examining legal restrictions on the use of 
movable collateral. These scenarios assume that the 
borrower:
 Is a private, limited liability company.
 Has its headquarters and only base of 
operations in the largest business city.
  WHAT THE GETTING CREDIT INDICATORS 
MEASURE
Strength of legal rights index (0–10)
Protection of rights of borrowers and lenders 
through collateral laws 
Protection of secured creditors’ rights through 
bankruptcy laws
Depth of credit information index (0–6)
Scope and accessibility of credit information 
distributed by public credit registries and 
private credit bureaus
Public credit registry coverage (% of adults)
Number of individuals and firms listed in 
public credit registry as percentage of adult 
population
Private credit bureau coverage (% of adults)
Number of individuals and firms listed in 
largest private credit bureau as percentage of 
adult population
 Has 100 employees.
 Is 100% domestically owned, as is the lender.
The ranking on the ease of getting credit is based on 
the percentile rankings on its component indicators: 
the depth of credit information index (weighted at 
37.5%) and the strength of legal rights index 
(weighted at 62.5%).47 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT
Where does the economy stand today?
How well do the credit information system and 
collateral and bankruptcy laws in  St. Lucia facilitate 
access to credit? The economy has a score of 0 on the 
depth of credit information index and a score of 8 on 
the strength of legal rights index (see the summary of 
scoring at the end of this chapter for details). Higher 
scores indicate more credit information and stronger
legal rights for borrowers and lenders.
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  98 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of getting credit (figure 6.1). 
The rankings for comparator economies and  the 
regional average ranking provide other useful
information for assessing how well regulations and 
institutions in St. Lucia support lending and borrowing.
Figure 6.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of getting credit
Source: Doing Business database.48 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT 
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
well the credit information system and collateral and 
bankruptcy laws in  St. Lucia support lending and 
borrowing today, data over time can help show where 
institutions and regulations have been strengthened—
and where they have not (table 6.1). That can help 
identify where the potential for improvement is 
greatest.
Table 6.1 The ease of getting credit in St. Lucia over time
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2005 DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. .. 96 98
Strength of legal rights 
index (0-10)
n.a. 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
Depth of credit 
information index (0-6)
n.a. 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Public registry coverage 
(% of adults)
n.a. n.a. 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Private bureau 
coverage (% of adults)
n.a. n.a. 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes 
to the methodology.
Source: Doing Business database.49 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT
One way to put an economy’s getting credit indicators 
into context is to see where the economy stands in the 
distribution of scores across other economies. Figure 
6.2 highlights the score on the strength of legal rights 
index for  St. Lucia in 2011  and shows the number of 
other economies having the same score in 2011. 
Figure 6.3 shows the same thing for the depth of credit 
information index.
Figure 6.2 Have legal rights for borrowers and lenders 
become stronger?
Figure 6.3 Have the coverage and accessibility of credit 
information grown?
Number of economies with each score on strength of legal 
rights index (0–10), 2011
Source: Doing Business database.
Number of economies with each score on depth of credit 
information index (0–6), 2011
Source: Doing Business database.50 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT
When economies strengthen the legal rights of lenders 
and borrowers under collateral and bankruptcy laws, 
and increase the scope, coverage and accessibility of 
credit information, they can increase entrepreneurs’ 
access to credit. What credit reforms has  Doing 
Business recorded in St. Lucia (table 6.2)?
Table 6.2 How has St. Lucia made getting credit easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2005), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.51 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
GETTING CREDIT
What are the details? 
The getting credit indicators reported here for St. Lucia
are based on detailed information collected in that 
economy. The data on credit information sharing are 
collected through a survey of a public credit registry or 
private credit bureau (if one exists). To construct the 
depth of credit information index, a score of 1 is 
assigned for each of 6 features of the public credit 
registry or private credit bureau (see summary of 
scoring below).
The data on the legal rights of borrowers and lenders 
are gathered through a survey of financial lawyers and 
verified through analysis of laws and regulations  as 
well as public sources of information on collateral and 
bankruptcy laws. For the strength of legal rights index, 
a score of 1 is assigned for each of 8 aspects related to 
legal rights in collateral law and 2 aspects in 
bankruptcy law.
Summary of scoring for the getting credit indicators in St. Lucia
Indicator St. Lucia
Latin America & 
Caribbean
OECD high income
Strength of legal rights index (0-10) 8 6 7
Depth of credit information index (0-6) 0 3 5
Public registry coverage (% of adults) 0.0 10.1 9.5
Private bureau coverage (% of adults) 0.0 34.2 63.9
Strength of legal rights index (0–10) Index score: 8
Can any business use movable assets as collateral while keeping possession of the assets; 
and any financial  institution accept such assets as collateral ?
Yes
Does the law allow businesses to grant a non possessory security right in a single category of 
movable assets, without requiring a specific description of collateral?
Yes
Does the law allow businesses to grant a non possessory security right in substantially all of 
its assets, without requiring a specific description of collateral?
Yes
May a security right extend to future or after-acquired assets, and may it extend 
automatically to the products, proceeds or replacements of the original assets ?
Yes
Is a general description of debts and obligations permitted in collateral agreements; can all 
types of debts and obligations be secured between parties; and can the collateral agreement 
include a maximum amount for which the assets are encumbered?
Yes
Is a collateral registry in operation, that is unified geographically and by asset type, with an 
electronic database indexed by debtor's names?
Yes
Are secured creditors paid first (i.e. before general tax claims and employee claims) when a 
debtor defaults outside an insolvency procedure?
No52 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Strength of legal rights index (0–10) Index score: 8
Are secured creditors paid first (i.e. before general tax claims and employee claims) when a 
business is liquidated?
No
Are secured creditors either not subject to an automatic stay or moratorium on enforcement 
procedures when a debtor enters a court-supervised reorganization procedure, or the law 
provides secured creditors with grounds for relief from an automatic stay or
Yes
Does the law allow parties to agree in a collateral agreement that the lender may enforce its 
security right out of court, at the time a security interest is created? 
Yes
Depth of credit information index (0–6)
Private credit 
bureau
Public credit 
registry
Index score: 0
Are data on both firms and individuals distributed? No No 0
Are both positive and negative data distributed? No No 0
Does the registry distribute credit information from 
retailers, trade creditors or utility companies as well as 
financial institutions?
No No 0
Are more than 2 years of historical credit information 
distributed?
No No 0
Is data on all loans below 1% of income per capita 
distributed?
No No 0
Is it guaranteed by law that borrowers can inspect 
their data in the largest credit registry?
No No 0
Note: An economy receives a score of 1 if there is a "yes" to either private bureau or public registry.
Coverage Private credit bureau Public credit registry
Number of firms 0 0
Number of individuals 0 0
Source: Doing Business database.53 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
Investor protections matter for the ability of 
companies to raise the capital they need to grow, 
innovate, diversify and compete. If the laws do not 
provide such protections, investors may be reluctant 
to invest unless they become the controlling 
shareholders. Strong regulations clearly define 
related-party transactions, promote clear and efficient 
disclosure requirements, require shareholder 
participation in major decisions of the company and 
set clear standards of accountability for company 
insiders. 
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business measures the strength of minority 
shareholder protections against directors’ use of 
corporate assets for personal gain—or self-dealing. 
The indicators distinguish 3 dimensions of investor 
protections: transparency of related-party
transactions (extent of disclosure index), liability for 
self-dealing (extent of director liability index) and 
shareholders’ ability to sue officers and directors for 
misconduct (ease of shareholder suits index). The 
ranking on the strength of investor protection index is 
the simple average of the percentile rankings on 
these 3 indices. To make the data comparable across 
economies, a case study uses several assumptions 
about the business and the transaction.
The business (Buyer):
 Is a publicly traded corporation listed on the 
economy’s most important stock exchange (or 
at least a large private company with multiple 
shareholders).
 Has a board of directors and a chief executive 
officer (CEO) who may legally act on behalf of 
Buyer where permitted, even if this is not 
specifically required by law.
The transaction involves the following details:
 Mr. James, a director and the majority 
shareholder of the company, proposes that 
WHAT THE PROTECTING INVESTORS 
INDICATORS MEASURE
Extent of disclosure index (0–10)
Who can approve related-party transactions 
Disclosure requirements in case of relatedparty transactions
Extent of director liability index (0–10)
Ability of shareholders to hold interested 
parties and members of the approving body 
liable in case of related-party transactions
Available legal remedies (damages, repayment 
of profits, fines, imprisonment and rescission 
of the transaction)
Ability of shareholders to sue directly or 
derivatively
Ease of shareholder suits index (0–10)
Access to internal corporate documents 
(directly or through a government inspector)
Documents and information available during 
trial
Strength of investor protection index (0–10)
Simple average of the extent of disclosure, 
extent of director liability and ease of 
shareholder suits indices
the company purchase used trucks from another 
company he owns.
 The price is higher than the going price for used 
trucks, but the transaction goes forward.
 All required approvals are obtained, and all 
required disclosures made, though the transaction 
is prejudicial to Buyer. 
 Shareholders sue the interested parties and the 
members of the board of directors.54 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
Where does the economy stand today?
How strong are investor protections in  St. Lucia? The 
economy has a score of 6.3 on the strength of investor 
protection  index, with a higher score indicating 
stronger protections (see the summary of scoring at 
the end of this chapter for details). 
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  29 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the strength of investor protection 
index (figure 7.1). While the indicator does not 
measure all aspects related to the protection of 
minority investors, a higher ranking does indicate that 
an economy’s regulations offer stronger investor 
protections against self-dealing in the areas measured.
Figure 7.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the strength of investor protection index
Source: Doing Business database.55 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
well regulations in St. Lucia protect minority investors 
today, data over time show whether the protections 
have been strengthened (table 7.1). And the global 
ranking on the strength of investor protection index 
over time shows whether the economy  is slipping 
behind other economies in investor protections—or 
surpassing them.
Table 7.1 The strength of investor protections in St. Lucia over time
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. 28 29
Extent of disclosure 
index (0-10)
4 4 4 4 4 4 4
Extent of director 
liability index (0-10)
8 8 8 8 8 8 8
Ease of shareholder 
suits index (0-10)
7 7 7 7 7 7 7
Strength of investor 
protection index (0-10)
6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3 6.3
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to 
the methodology.
Source: Doing Business database.56 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
But the overall ranking on the strength of investor 
protection index tells only part of the story. Economies 
may offer strong protections in some areas but not 
others. So the scores recorded over time for  St. Lucia
on the extent of disclosure, extent of director liability 
and ease of shareholder suits indices may also be 
revealing (figure 7.2). Equally interesting may be the 
changes over time in the regional average  scores for 
those indices.
Figure 7.2 Have investor protections become stronger?
Strength of investor protection index (0-10)
Extent of disclosure index (0-10)57 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
Extent of director liability index (0-10)
Ease of shareholder suits index (0-10)
Note: The higher the score, the stronger the investor protections. The economy with the best performance regionally on 
each indicator, and the economy with the best performance globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or 
more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an indicator.
Source: Doing Business database.58 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
Economies with the strongest protections of minority 
investors from self-dealing require more disclosure 
and define clear duties for directors. They also have 
well-functioning courts and up-to-date procedural 
rules that give minority investors the means to prove 
their case and obtain a judgment within a reasonable 
time. So reforms  to strengthen investor protections 
may move ahead on different fronts—such as through 
new or amended company laws or  civil procedure 
rules. What investor protection reforms has  Doing 
Business recorded in St. Lucia (table 7.2)?
Table 7.2 How has St. Lucia strengthened investor protections—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2006), see the Doing Business reports for 
these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.59 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PROTECTING INVESTORS
What are the details? 
The protecting investors indicators reported here for 
St. Lucia are based on detailed information collected 
through a survey of corporate and securities lawyers 
and are based on securities regulations, company laws 
and court rules of evidence. To construct the extent of 
disclosure, extent of director  liability and ease of 
shareholder suits indices, a score is assigned for each 
of a range of conditions relating to disclosure, director 
liability and shareholder suits in a standard case study 
transaction (see the notes at the end of this chapter). 
The summary below shows the details underlying the 
scores for St. Lucia.
Summary of scoring for the protecting investors indicators in St. Lucia
Indicator St. Lucia
Latin America & 
Caribbean
OECD high income
Extent of disclosure index (0-10) 4 4 6
Extent of director liability index (0-10) 8 5 5
Ease of shareholder suits index (0-10) 7 6 7
Strength of investor protection index (0-10) 6.3 5.1 6.0
Score
Extent of disclosure index (0-10) 4
What corporate body provides legally sufficient approval for the transaction? 1
Whether disclosure of the conflict of interest by Mr. James to the board of directors is 
required?
2
Whether immediate disclosure of the transaction to the public and/or shareholders is 
required?
0
Whether disclosure of the transaction in published periodic filings (annual reports) is 
required?
1
Whether an external body must review the terms of the transaction before it takes place? 0
Extent of director liability index (0-10) 8
Whether shareholders can sue directly or derivatively for the damage that the Buyer-Seller 
transaction causes to the company?
1
Whether shareholders can hold Mr. James liable for the damage that the Buyer-Seller 
transaction causes to the company?
2
Whether shareholders can hold members of the approving body liable for the damage that 
the Buyer-Seller transaction causes to the company?
2
Whether a court can void the transaction upon a successful claim by a shareholder plaintiff? 160 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Score
Whether Mr. James pays damages for the harm caused to the company upon a successful 
claim by the shareholder plaintiff?
1
Whether Mr. James repays profits made from the transaction upon a successful claim by the 
shareholder plaintiff?
1
Whether fines and imprisonment can be applied against Mr. James? 0
Ease of shareholder suits index (0-10) 7
Whether shareholders owning 10% or less of Buyer's shares can inspect transaction 
documents before filing suit?
0
Whether shareholders owning 10% or less of Buyer's shares can request an inspector to 
investigate the transaction?
0
Whether the plaintiff can obtain any documents from the defendant and witnesses during 
trial?
3
Whether the plaintiff can request categories of documents from the defendant without 
identifying specific ones?
1
Whether the plaintiff can directly question the defendant and witnesses during trial? 2
Whether the level of proof required for civil suits is lower than that of criminal cases? 1
Strength of investor protection index (0-10) 6.3
Source: Doing Business database.
Notes:
Extent of disclosure index (0–10)
Scoring for the extent of disclosure index is based on 5 components:
Which corporate body can provide legally sufficient approval for the transaction
0 = CEO or managing director alone; 1 = shareholders or board of directors vote and Mr. James can vote; 2 =
board of directors votes and Mr. James cannot vote; 3 = shareholders vote and Mr. James cannot vote.
Whether disclosure of the conflict of interest by Mr. James to the board of directors is required
0 = no disclosure; 1 = disclosure of the existence of a conflict without any specifics; 2 = full disclosure of all 
material facts.
Whether immediate disclosure of the transaction to the public, the regulator or the shareholders is required
0 = no disclosure; 1 = disclosure on the transaction only; 2 = disclosure on the transaction and Mr. James’s
conflict of interest.
Whether disclosure of the transaction in the annual report is required 
0 = no disclosure; 1 = disclosure on the transaction only; 2 = disclosure on the transaction and Mr. James’s
conflict of interest.61 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Whether it is required that an external body (for example, an external auditor) review the transaction before it takes 
place
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Extent of director liability index (0–10)
Scoring for the extent of director liability index is based on 7 components:
Whether shareholders can sue directly or derivatively for the damage that the Buyer-Seller transaction causes to the 
company
0 = suits are unavailable or available only for shareholders holding more than 10% of the company’s share capital; 
1 = direct or derivative suits available for shareholders holding 10% of share capital or less.
Whether shareholders can hold Mr. James liable for the damage that the transaction causes to the company 
0 = Mr. James is not liable or is liable only if he acted fraudulently or in bad faith; 1 = Mr. James is liable if he 
influenced the approval or was negligent; 2 = Mr. James is liable if the transaction is unfair or prejudicial to the 
other shareholders.
Whether shareholders can hold the approving body (the CEO or members of the board of directors) liable for the 
damage that the transaction causes to the company
0 = members of the approving body are either not liable or liable only if they acted fraudulently or in bad faith; 
1 = liable for negligence in the approval of the transaction; 2 = liable if the transaction is unfair or prejudicial to 
the other shareholders.
Whether a court can void the transaction upon a successful claim by a shareholder plaintiff
0 = rescission is unavailable or available only in case of Seller’s fraud or bad faith; 1 = rescission is available when 
the transaction is oppressive or prejudicial to the other shareholders; 2 = rescission is available when the 
transaction is unfair or entails a conflict of interest.
Whether Mr. James pays damages for the harm caused to the company upon a successful claim by the shareholder 
plaintiff
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Whether Mr. James repays profits made from the transaction upon a successful claim by the shareholder plaintiff 
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Whether both fines and imprisonment can be applied against Mr. James
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Ease of shareholder suits index (0–10)
Scoring for the ease of shareholder suits index is based on 6 components:
What range of documents is available to the plaintiff from the defendant and witnesses during trial 
Score of 1 for each of the following: information that the defendant has indicated he intends to rely on for his 
defense; information that directly proves specific facts in the plaintiff’s claim; any information relevant to the 
subject matter of the claim; and any information that may lead to the discovery of relevant information.62 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Whether the plaintiff can directly examine the defendant and witnesses during trial
0 = no; 1 = yes, with prior approval by the court of the questions posed; 2 = yes, without prior approval.
Whether the plaintiff can obtain categories of relevant documents from the defendant without identifying each 
document specifically
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Whether shareholders owning 10% or less of the company’s share capital can request that a government inspector 
investigate the transaction without filing suit in court
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Whether shareholders owning 10% or less of the company’s share capital have the right to inspect the transaction 
documents before filing suit
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Whether the standard of proof for civil suits is lower than that for a criminal case
0 = no; 1 = yes.
Strength of investor protection index (0–10) 
Simple average of the extent of disclosure, extent of director liability and ease of shareholder suits indices.63 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
Taxes are essential. They fund the public amenities, 
infrastructure and services that are crucial for a 
properly functioning economy. But the level of tax 
rates needs to be carefully chosen—and needless 
complexity in tax rules avoided. According to 
Doing Business data, in economies where it is more 
difficult and costly to pay taxes, larger shares of 
economic activity end up in the informal sector—
where businesses pay no taxes at all. 
What do the indicators cover?
Using a case scenario,  Doing Business measures 
the taxes and mandatory contributions that a 
medium-size company must pay in a given year as 
well as the administrative burden of paying taxes 
and contributions. This case scenario uses a set of 
financial statements and assumptions about 
transactions made over the year. Information is 
also compiled on the frequency of filing and 
payments as well as time taken to comply with tax 
laws. The ranking on the ease of paying taxes is 
the simple average of the percentile rankings on 
its component indicators: number of annual 
payments, time and total tax rate, with a threshold 
being applied to the total tax rate.
2
To make the 
data comparable across economies, several 
assumptions about the business and the taxes and 
contributions are used.
 TaxpayerCo is a medium-size business that 
started operations on January 1, 2009. 
 The business starts from the same financial 
position in each economy. All the taxes 
and mandatory contributions paid during 
the second year of operation are recorded.
 Taxes and mandatory contributions are 
measured at all levels of government.
  WHAT THE PAYING TAXES INDICATORS          
MEASURE
Tax payments for a manufacturing company 
in 2010 (number per year adjusted for 
electronic or joint filing and payment)
Total number of taxes and contributions paid, 
including consumption taxes (value added tax, 
sales tax or goods and service tax)
Method and frequency of filing and payment
Time required to comply with 3 major taxes 
(hours per year)
Collecting information and computing the tax 
payable
Completing tax return forms, filing with 
proper agencies
Arranging payment or withholding 
Preparing separate tax accounting books, if 
required
Total tax rate (% of profit before all taxes)
Profit or corporate income tax
Social contributions and labor taxes paid by 
the employer
Property and property transfer taxes
Dividend, capital gains and financial 
transactions taxes
Waste collection, vehicle, road and other taxes
 Taxes and mandatory contributions include 
corporate income tax, turnover tax and all 
labor taxes and contributions paid by the 
company. 
 A range of standard deductions and 
exemptions are also recorded.
                                                     
2
The threshold is defined as the highest total tax rate among the top 30% of economies in the ranking on the total tax rate. It will be 
calculated and adjusted on a yearly basis. The threshold is not based on any underlying theory. Instead, it is intended to mitigate the effect of 
very low tax rates on the ranking on the ease of paying taxes.64 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
Where does the economy stand today?
What is the administrative burden of complying with 
taxes in  St. Lucia—and how much do firms pay in 
taxes? On average, firms make 32 tax payments a year, 
spend  92 hours a year filing, preparing and paying 
taxes and pay total taxes amounting to 25.9% of profit 
(see the  summary at the end of this chapter for 
details). 
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  52 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of paying taxes (figure 8.1). The 
rankings for comparator economies and  the regional 
average ranking provide other useful information for 
assessing the tax compliance burden for businesses in 
St. Lucia.
Figure 8.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of paying taxes
Note: DB2012 rankings reflect changes to the methodology. For all economies with a total tax rate below the threshold of 
32.5% applied in DB2012, the total tax rate is set at 32.5% for the purpose of calculating the ranking on the ease of paying 
taxes.
Source: Doing Business database.65 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to comply with tax rules in  St. 
Lucia today, data over time show which aspects of the 
process have changed — and which have not (table 
8.1). That can help identify where the potential for 
easing tax compliance is greatest.
Table 8.1 The ease of paying taxes in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. 48 52
Payments (number per 
year)
32 32 32 32 32 32 32
Time (hours per year) 71 71 71 61 92 92 92
Total tax rate (% profit) 35.7 34.0 34.0 34.0 34.4 34.0 34.4
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to the 
methodology. For all economies with a total tax rate below the threshold of 32.5% applied in DB2012, the total tax rate is set at 
32.5% for the purpose of calculating the rank on the ease of paying taxes.
Source: Doing Business database.66 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the  economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the number of payments or 
the time required to prepare and file taxes (figure 8.2).
These economies may provide a model for St. Lucia on 
ways to ease the administrative burden of tax 
compliance. And changes in regional averages can 
show where  St. Lucia is keeping up—and where it is 
falling behind.
Figure 8.2 Has paying taxes become easier over time?
Payments (number per year)
Time (hours per year)67 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
Total tax rate (% of profit)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. The best performer globally on an indicator has implemented the most efficient 
practices in its tax system but is not necessarily the one with the highest ranking on the indicator. In some cases 2 or 
more economies share the top regional ranking on an indicator. DB2012 rankings reflect changes to the methodology. For 
all economies with a total tax rate below the threshold of 32.5% applied in DB2012, the total tax rate is set at 32.5% for the 
purpose of calculating the ranking on the ease of paying taxes.
Source: Doing Business database.68 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
Economies around the world have made paying taxes 
faster and easier for businesses—such as by 
consolidating filings, reducing the frequency of 
payments or offering electronic filing and payment. 
Many have lowered tax rates. Changes have brought 
concrete results. Some economies simplifying tax 
payment and reducing rates have seen tax revenue 
rise. What tax reforms has Doing Business recorded in 
St. Lucia (table 8.2)?
Table 8.2 How has St. Lucia made paying taxes easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2006), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.69 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
PAYING TAXES
What are the details?
The indicators reported here for St. Lucia are based on 
a standard set of taxes and contributions that would 
be paid by the case study company used by  Doing 
Business in collecting the data (see the section in this 
chapter on what the indicators cover). Tax practitioners 
are asked to review standard financial statements as 
well as a standard list of transactions that the company 
completed during the year. Respondents are asked 
how much in taxes and mandatory contributions the 
business must pay and what the process is for doing 
so. The taxes and contributions  paid are listed in the 
summary below, along with the associated number of 
payments, time and tax rate.
Summary of tax rates and administrative burden in St. Lucia
Indicator St. Lucia
Latin America & 
Caribbean
OECD high income
Payments (number per year) 32 32 13
Time (hours per year) 92 382 186
Profit tax (%) 25.9 19.9 15.4
Labor tax and contributions (%) 5.6 14.6 24.0
Other taxes (%) 2.9 13.2 3.2
Total tax rate (% profit) 34.4 47.7 42.7
Tax or mandatory     
contribution
Payments
(number)
Notes on 
payments
Time
(hours)
Statutory 
tax rate
Tax base
Total tax 
rate (% of
profit)
Notes on 
total tax 
rate
Corporate income tax 1 11 30%
taxable 
profits
25.9
Social security 
contributions
12 51 5.00%
gross 
salaries
5.6
Property transfer tax 
(stamp duty)
1 0 4% sale price 2.5
Property tax 1 0 0.25%
property 
value
0.3
Vehicle tax 1 0 fixed fee
size or 
capacity of 
vehicle
0.1
Tax on insurance contracts 1 0 3%
insurance 
premium
0
Tax on check transactions 1 0 XCD 0,3 per check 070 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Tax or mandatory     
contribution
Payments
(number)
Notes on 
payments
Time
(hours)
Statutory 
tax rate
Tax base
Total tax 
rate (% of
profit)
Notes on 
total tax 
rate
fuel tax 1 0
included in 
fuel price
0
stamp duty on contracts 1 0 varies
type of 
contract
0 small amount
consumption tax 12 30 0-35%
cost of 
goods sold
0 withheld
Totals 32 92 34.4
Note: DB2012 rankings reflect changes to the methodology. For all economies with a total tax rate below the threshold of 
32.5% applied in DB2012, the total tax rate is set at 32.5% for the purpose of calculating the ranking on the ease of paying 
taxes.
Source: Doing Business database.71 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
In today’s globalized world, making trade between 
economies easier is increasingly important for 
business. Excessive document requirements, 
burdensome customs procedures, inefficient port 
operations and inadequate infrastructure all lead to 
extra costs and delays for exporters and importers, 
stifling trade potential. Research shows that 
exporters in developing countries gain more from 
a 10% drop in their trading costs than from a 
similar reduction in the tariffs applied to their 
products in global markets. 
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business measures the time and cost 
(excluding tariffs) associated with exporting and
importing a standard shipment of goods by ocean 
transport, and the number of documents necessary 
to complete the transaction. The indicators cover 
procedural requirements such as documentation 
requirements and procedures at customs and other 
regulatory agencies as well as at the port. They also 
cover trade logistics, including the time and cost of 
inland transport to the largest business city. The 
ranking on the ease of trading across borders is 
the simple average of the percentile rankings on its 
component indicators: documents, time and cost 
to export and import.
To make the data comparable across economies, 
Doing Business uses several assumptions about the 
business and the traded goods.
The business:
 Is of medium size and employs 60 people.
 Is located in the periurban area of the 
economy’s largest business city.
 Is a private, limited liability company, 
domestically owned, formally registered 
and operating under commercial laws and 
regulations of the economy.
The traded goods:
 Are not hazardous nor do they include 
military items.
  WHAT THE TRADING ACROSS BORDERS 
INDICATORS MEASURE
Documents required to export and import 
(number)
Bank documents
Customs clearance documents
Port and terminal handling documents
Transport documents
Time required to export and import (days)
Obtaining all the documents
Inland transport and handling
Customs clearance and inspections
Port and terminal handling
Does not include ocean transport time
Cost required to export and import (US$ per 
container)
All documentation
Inland transport and handling
Customs clearance and inspections
Port and terminal handling
Official costs only, no bribes
 Do not require refrigeration or any other 
special environment. 
 Do not require any special phytosanitary or 
environmental safety standards other than 
accepted international standards. 
 Are one of the economy’s leading export or 
import products. 
 Are transported in a dry-cargo, 20-foot full 
container load.72 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
Where does the economy stand today?
What does it take to export or import in  St. Lucia? 
According to data collected by  Doing Business, 
exporting a standard container of goods requires  5
documents, takes 14 days and costs $1700. Importing 
the same container of goods requires  8 documents, 
takes  18 days and costs $2745 (see the summary of 
procedures and documents at the end of this chapter 
for details).
Globally, St. Lucia stands at 110 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of trading across borders 
(figure 9.1). The rankings for comparator economies 
and the regional average ranking provide other useful
information for assessing how easy it is for a business 
in St. Lucia to export and import goods.
Figure 9.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of trading across borders
Source: Doing Business database.73 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to export or import in  St. Lucia
today, data over time show which aspects of the 
process have changed—and which have not (table 9.1). 
That can help identify where the potential for 
improvement is greatest.
Table 9.1 The ease of trading across borders in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank .. .. .. .. .. 108 110
Documents to export 
(number)
5 5 5 5 5 5 5
Time to export (days) 18 18 18 15 14 14 14
Cost to export (US$ per 
container)
1,550 1,550 1,550 1,600 1,600 1,700 1,700
Documents to import 
(number)
8 8 8 8 8 8 8
Time to import (days) 21 21 21 18 18 18 18
Cost to import (US$ per 
container)
2,595 2,595 2,595 2,645 2,645 2,745 2,745
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect 
changes to the methodology.
Source: Doing Business database.
Equally helpful may be the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the documents, time or cost 
required to export or import (figure 9.2). These 
economies may provide a model for St. Lucia on ways 
to improve the ease of trading across borders. And 
changes in regional averages can show where St. Lucia
is keeping up—and where it is falling behind.74 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
Figure 9.2 Has trading across borders become easier over time? 
Documents to export (number)
Time to export (days)75 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
Cost to export (US$ per container)
Documents to import (number)76 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
Time to import (days)
Cost to import (US$ per container)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator.
Source: Doing Business database.77 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
In economies around the world, trading across borders 
as measured by Doing Business has become faster and 
easier over the years. Governments have introduced 
tools to facilitate trade—including single windows, 
risk-based inspections and electronic data interchange 
systems.  These changes help improve the trading 
environment and boost firms’ international 
competitiveness. What trade reforms has  Doing 
Business recorded in St. Lucia (table 9.2)?
Table 9.2 How has St. Lucia made trading across borders easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2006), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.78 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
What are the details? 
The indicators reported here for St. Lucia are based on 
a set of specific procedural requirements for trading a 
standard shipment of goods by ocean transport (see 
the section in this chapter on what the indicators 
cover). Information on the procedures as well as the 
required documents and the time and cost to 
complete each procedure is collected from local 
freight forwarders, shipping lines, customs brokers, 
port officials and banks. The procedural requirements, 
and the associated time and cost, for exporting and 
importing a standard shipment of goods are listed in 
the summary below, along with the required 
documents.
Summary of procedures and documents for trading across borders in St. Lucia
Indicator St. Lucia
Latin America & 
Caribbean
OECD high income
Documents to export (number) 5 6 4
Time to export (days) 14 18 10
Cost to export (US$ per container) 1700 1,257 1,032
Documents to import (number) 8 7 5
Time to import (days) 18 20 11
Cost to import (US$ per container) 2745 1,546 1,085
Procedures to export Time (days) Cost (US$)
Documents preparation 5 250
Customs clearance and technical control 1 100
Ports and terminal handling 6 600
Inland transportation and handling 2 750
Totals 14 1700
Procedures to import Time (days) Cost (US$)
Documents preparation 9 250
Customs clearance and technical control 1 1145
Ports and terminal handling 6 600
Inland transportation and handling 2 750
Totals 18 274579 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
TRADING ACROSS BORDERS
Documents to export
Bill of lading
Certificate of origin
Commercial Invoice
Shipping bill
Single Administrative Document
Documents to import
Import license
Inspection report
Single Administrative Document (SAD)
Technical standard/health certificate
Bill of lading
Cargo release order
Certificate of origin
Commercial invoice80 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS 
Well-functioning courts help businesses expand 
their network and markets. Without effective 
contract enforcement, people might well do 
business only with family, friends and others with 
whom they have established relationships. Where
contract enforcement is efficient, firms are more 
likely to engage with new borrowers or customers, 
and they have greater access to credit. 
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business measures the efficiency of the 
judicial system in resolving a commercial dispute 
before local courts. Following the step-by-step 
evolution of a standardized case study, it collects 
data relating to the time, cost and procedural 
complexity of resolving a commercial lawsuit. The 
ranking on the ease of enforcing contracts is the 
simple average of the percentile rankings on its 
component indicators: procedures, time and cost. 
The dispute in the case study involves the breach 
of a sales contract between 2 domestic businesses. 
The case study assumes that the court hears an 
expert on the quality of the goods in dispute. This 
distinguishes the case from simple debt 
enforcement. To make the data comparable across 
economies,  Doing Business uses several 
assumptions about the case:
 The seller and buyer are located in the 
economy’s largest business city.
 The buyer orders custom-made goods, 
then fails to pay.
 The seller sues the buyer before a 
competent court.
 The value of the claim is 200% of income 
per capita.
 The seller requests a pretrial attachment to 
secure the claim.
  WHAT THE ENFORCING CONTRACTS     
  INDICATORS MEASURE
Procedures to enforce a contract through 
the courts (number)
Any interaction between the parties in a 
commercial dispute, or between them and 
the judge or court officer
Steps to file and serve the case 
Steps for trial and judgment
Steps to enforce the judgment
Time required to complete procedures 
(calendar days)
Time to file and serve the case
Time for trial and obtaining judgment
Time to enforce the judgment
Cost required to complete procedures (% of 
claim)
No bribes
Average attorney fees
Court costs, including expert fees
Enforcement costs
 The dispute on the quality of the goods 
requires an expert opinion.
 The judge decides in favor of the seller; there 
is no appeal. 
 The seller enforces the judgment through a 
public sale of the buyer’s movable assets.81 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
Where does the economy stand today?
How efficient is the process of resolving a commercial 
dispute through the courts in  St. Lucia? According to 
data collected by Doing Business, enforcing a contract 
requires  47 procedures, takes  635 days and costs 
37.3% of the value of the claim (see the summary at 
the end of this chapter for details).
Globally, St. Lucia stands at 165 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of enforcing contracts (figure 
10.1). The rankings for comparator economies and the 
regional average ranking provide other useful
benchmarks for assessing the efficiency of contract 
enforcement in St. Lucia.
Figure 10.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of enforcing contracts 
Source: Doing Business database.82 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect how 
easy (or difficult) it is to enforce a contract in St. Lucia
today, data on the underlying indicators over time help 
identify which areas have changed and where the 
potential for improvement is greatest (table 10.1).
Table 10.1 The ease of enforcing contracts in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2004 DB2005 DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank
.. .. .. .. .. .. .. 166 165
Time (days)
n.a. n.a. 635 635 635 635 635 635 635
Cost (% of claim)
n.a. n.a. 37.3 37.3 37.3 37.3 37.3 37.3 37.3
Procedures (number)
n.a. n.a. 47 47 47 47 47 47 47
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to 
the methodology.
Source: Doing Business database.83 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the number of steps, time or 
cost required to enforce a contract through the courts 
(figure 10.2).  These economies may provide a model 
for  St. Lucia on ways to improve the efficiency of 
contract enforcement.  And changes in regional 
averages can show where St. Lucia is keeping up—and 
where it is falling behind.
Figure 10.2 Has enforcing contracts become easier over time?
Procedures (number)
Time (days)84 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
Cost (% of claim)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator.
Source: Doing Business database.85 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
Economies in all regions have improved contract 
enforcement in recent years. A judiciary can be 
improved in different ways. Higher-income economies 
tend to look for ways to enhance efficiency by 
introducing new technology. Lower-income economies 
often work on reducing backlogs by introducing 
periodic reviews to clear inactive cases from the docket 
and by making procedures faster. What reforms 
making it easier (or more difficult) to enforce contracts 
has Doing Business recorded in St. Lucia (table 10.2)?
Table 10.2 How has St. Lucia made enforcing contracts easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2005), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.86 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
ENFORCING CONTRACTS
What are the details? 
The indicators reported here for St. Lucia are based on 
a set of specific procedural steps required to resolve a 
standardized commercial dispute through the courts 
(see the section in this chapter on what the indicators 
cover). These procedures, and the time and cost of 
completing them, are identified through study of the
codes of civil procedure and other court regulations, as 
well as through surveys completed by local litigation 
lawyers (and, in a quarter of the economies covered by 
Doing Business, by judges as well). The procedures for 
resolving a commercial lawsuit, and the associated 
time and cost, are listed in the summary below.
Summary of procedures for enforcing a contract in St. Lucia—and the time and cost
  Indicator St. Lucia
Latin America & 
Caribbean
OECD high income
Time (days) 635 707.78 518.03
Filing and service 11
Trial and judgment 444
Enforcement of judgment 180
Cost (% of claim) 37.3 31.21 19.71
Attorney cost (% of claim) 29.3
Court cost (% of claim) 2
Enforcement Cost (% of claim) 6
Procedures (number) 47 40.03 31.42
Source: Doing Business database.87 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
A robust bankruptcy system functions as a filter, 
ensuring the survival of economically efficient 
companies and reallocating the resources of 
inefficient ones. Fast and cheap insolvency 
proceedings result in the speedy return of 
businesses to normal operation and increase 
returns to creditors. By improving the expectations 
of creditors and debtors about the outcome of 
insolvency proceedings, well-functioning 
insolvency systems can facilitate access to finance, 
save more viable businesses and thereby improve 
growth and sustainability in the economy overall.
What do the indicators cover?
Doing Business studies the time, cost and outcome 
of insolvency proceedings involving domestic 
entities. It does not measure insolvency 
proceedings of individuals and financial 
institutions. The data are derived from survey 
responses by local insolvency practitioners and 
verified through a study of laws and regulations as 
well as public information on bankruptcy systems. 
The ranking on the ease of resolving insolvency is 
based on the recovery rate, which is recorded as 
cents on the dollar recouped by creditors through 
reorganization, liquidation or debt enforcement 
(foreclosure) proceedings. The recovery rate is a 
function of time, cost and other factors, such as 
lending rate and the likelihood of the company 
continuing to operate.
To make the data comparable across economies, 
Doing Business uses several assumptions about the 
business and the case. It assumes that the 
company:
 Is a domestically owned, limited liability 
company operating a hotel.
 Operates in the economy’s largest business 
city.
  WHAT THE RESOLVING INSOLVENCY   
INDICATORS MEASURE
Time required to recover debt (years)
Measured in calendar years
Appeals and requests for extension are 
included
Cost required to recover debt (% of debtor’s 
estate)
Measured as percentage of estate value
Court fees
Fees of insolvency administrators
Lawyers’ fees
Assessors’ and auctioneers’ fees
Other related fees
Recovery rate for creditors (cents on the 
dollar)
Measures the cents on the dollar recovered 
by creditors
Present value of debt recovered
Official costs of the insolvency proceedings 
are deducted
Depreciation of furniture is taken into 
account
Outcome for the business (survival or not) 
affects the maximum value that can be 
recovered
 Has 201 employees, 1 main secured creditor 
and 50 unsecured creditors.
 Has a higher value as a going concern—and 
the efficient outcome is either reorganization 
or sale as a going concern, not piecemeal 
liquidation.88 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
Where does the economy stand today?
Speed, low costs and continuation of viable businesses 
characterize the top-performing economies. How 
efficient are insolvency proceedings in  St. Lucia? 
According to data collected by  Doing Business, 
resolving insolvency takes  2.0 years on average and 
costs 9% of the debtor’s estate. The average recovery 
rate is 41.7 cents on the dollar.
Globally,  St. Lucia stands at  58 in the ranking of 183 
economies on the ease of resolving insolvency (figure 
11.1). The rankings for comparator economies and the 
regional average ranking provide other useful
benchmarks for assessing the efficiency of insolvency 
proceedings in St. Lucia.
Figure 11.1 How St. Lucia and comparator economies rank on the ease of resolving insolvency
Source: Doing Business database.89 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
What are the changes over time?
While the most recent Doing Business data reflect the 
efficiency of insolvency proceedings in St. Lucia today,
data over time show where the  efficiency has 
changed—and where it has not (table 11.1). That can 
help identify where the potential for improvement is 
greatest.
Table 11.1 The ease of resolving insolvency in St. Lucia over time 
By Doing Business report year
Indicator DB2004 DB2005 DB2006 DB2007 DB2008 DB2009 DB2010 DB2011 DB2012
Rank
.. .. .. .. .. .. .. 53 58
Time (years)
n.a. n.a. 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0 2.0
Cost (% of estate)
0 0 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
Recovery rate (cents on 
the dollar)
n.a. n.a. 42.2 42.2 41.8 42.9 42.9 41.5 41.7
Note: n.a. = not applicable (the economy was not included in Doing Business for that year). DB2012 rankings reflect changes to 
the methodology. ―No practice‖ indicates that  in each of the previous 5 years the economy had  no cases involving a judicial 
reorganization, judicial liquidation or debt enforcement procedure (foreclosure). This means that creditors are unlikely to recover 
their money through a formal legal process (in or out of court). The recovery rate for ―no practice‖ economies is 0.
Source: Doing Business database.90 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
Equally helpful may be  the benchmarks provided by 
the economies that today have the best performance 
regionally or globally on the time or cost of insolvency 
proceedings or on  the recovery rate (figure 11.2). 
These economies may provide a model for St. Lucia on 
ways to improve the efficiency of insolvency 
proceedings. And changes in regional averages can 
show where  St. Lucia is keeping up—and  where it is 
falling behind.
Figure 11.2 Has resolving insolvency become easier over time?
Time (years)
Cost (% of estate)91 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
Recovery rate (cents on the dollar)
Note: The economy with the best performance regionally on each indicator, and the economy with the best performance 
globally, are included as benchmarks. In some cases 2 or more economies share the top regional or global ranking on an 
indicator. In cases where no data are displayed above for the economy, this indicates that the economy has received a 
“no practice” mark; see the data notes for details. 
Source: Doing Business database.92 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOLVING INSOLVENCY
A well-balanced bankruptcy system distinguishes 
companies that are financially distressed but 
economically viable from inefficient companies that 
should be liquidated. But in some insolvency systems 
even viable businesses are liquidated. This is starting to 
change. Many recent reforms of bankruptcy laws have 
been aimed at helping more of the viable businesses 
survive. What insolvency reforms has  Doing Business
recorded in St. Lucia (table 11.2)?
Table 11.2 How has St. Lucia made resolving insolvency easier—or not?
By Doing Business report year
DB Year Reform
DB2012 No reform.
DB2011 No reform.
DB2010 No reform.
DB2009 No reform.
Note: For information on reforms in earlier years (back to DB2005), see the Doing Business reports 
for these years, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org.
Source: Doing Business database.93 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
DATA NOTES
The indicators presented and analyzed in  Doing 
Business  measure business regulation and the 
protection of property rights—and their effect on 
businesses, especially small and medium-size domestic 
firms. First, the indicators document the complexity of 
regulation, such as the number of procedures to start a 
business or to register and transfer commercial 
property. Second, they gauge the time and cost of 
achieving a regulatory goal or complying with 
regulation, such as the time and cost to enforce a 
contract, go through bankruptcy or trade across 
borders. Third, they measure the extent of legal 
protections of property, for example, the protections 
of investors against looting by company directors or 
the range of assets that can be used as collateral 
according to secured transactions laws. Fourth, a set of 
indicators documents the tax burden on businesses. 
Finally, a set of data covers different aspects of 
employment regulation. 
The data for all sets of indicators in Doing Business 
2012 are for June 2011.
3
Methodology
The  Doing  Business data are collected in a 
standardized way. To start, the  Doing Business team, 
with academic advisers, designs a questionnaire. The 
questionnaire uses a simple business case to ensure 
comparability across economies and over time—with 
assumptions about the legal form of the business, its 
size, its location and the nature of its operations. 
Questionnaires are administered through more than 
9,028 local experts, including lawyers, business 
consultants, accountants, freight forwarders, 
government officials and other professionals routinely 
administering or advising on legal and regulatory 
requirements. These experts have several rounds of 
interaction with the  Doing Business team, involving 
conference calls, written correspondence and visits by 
the team. For  Doing Business 2012 team members 
visited 40 economies to verify data and recruit 
respondents. The data from questionnaires are 
subjected to numerous rounds of verification, leading 
to revisions or expansions of the information collected. 
                                                     
3
The data for paying taxes refer to January – December 2010.
The  Doing Business methodology offers several 
advantages. It is transparent, using factual information 
about what laws and regulations say and allowing
multiple interactions with local respondents to clarify 
potential misinterpretations of questions. Having 
representative samples of respondents is not an issue; 
    ECONOMY CHARACTERISTICS
Gross national income (GNI) per capita 
Doing Business 2012 reports 2010 income per capita 
as published in the World Bank’s World Development 
Indicators 2011. Income is calculated using the Atlas 
method (current US$). For cost indicators expressed 
as a percentage of income per capita, 2010 GNI in 
U.S. dollars is used as the denominator. Data were 
not available from the World Bank for Afghanistan;
Australia; The Bahamas; Bahrain; Brunei Darussalam;
Canada; Cyprus; Djibouti; the Islamic Republic of 
Iran; Kuwait; New Zealand; Oman; Puerto Rico 
(territory of the United States); Qatar; Saudi Arabia;
Suriname; Taiwan, China; the United Arab Emirates;
West Bank and Gaza; and the Republic of Yemen. In 
these cases GDP or GNP per capita data and growth 
rates from the International Monetary Fund’s World 
Economic Outlook database and the Economist 
Intelligence Unit were used.
Region and income group 
Doing Business  uses the World Bank regional and 
income group classifications, available at 
http://www.worldbank.org/data/countryclass. The 
World Bank does not assign regional classifications 
to high-income economies. For the purpose of the 
Doing Business report, high-income OECD 
economies are assigned the ―regional‖ classification 
OECD high income. Figures and tables presenting 
regional averages include economies from all 
income groups (low, lower middle, upper middle 
and high income).
Population 
Doing Business 2012 reports midyear 2010 
population statistics as published in  World 
Development Indicators 2011.94 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
Doing Business is not a statistical survey, and the texts 
of the relevant laws and regulations are collected and 
answers checked for accuracy. The methodology is 
inexpensive and easily replicable, so data can be 
collected in a large sample of economies. Because 
standard assumptions are used in the data collection, 
comparisons and benchmarks are valid across 
economies. Finally, the data not only  highlight the 
extent of specific regulatory obstacles to business but 
also identify their source and point to what might be 
reformed.
Information on the methodology for each  Doing 
Business topic can be found on the  Doing Business
website at http://www.doingbusiness.org/methodology/.
Limits to what is measured
The Doing Business methodology has 5 limitations that 
should be considered when interpreting the data. First, 
the collected data refer to businesses in the economy’s 
largest business city and may not be representative of 
regulation in other parts of the economy. To address 
this limitation, subnational  Doing Business indicators 
were created (see  the  section on subnational  Doing 
Business indicators). Second, the data often focus on a 
specific business form—generally a limited liability 
company (or its legal equivalent) of a specified size—
and may not be representative of the regulation on 
other businesses, for example, sole proprietorships. 
Third, transactions described in a standardized case 
scenario refer to a specific set of issues and may not 
represent the full set of issues a business encounters. 
Fourth, the measures of time involve an element of 
judgment by the expert respondents. When sources 
indicate different estimates, the time indicators 
reported in  Doing Business represent the median 
values of several responses given under the 
assumptions of the standardized case.
Finally, the methodology assumes that a business has 
full information on what is required and does not 
waste time when completing procedures. In practice, 
completing a procedure may take longer if the 
business lacks information or is unable to follow up 
promptly. Alternatively, the business may choose to 
disregard some burdensome procedures. For both 
reasons the time delays reported in  Doing Business 
2012 would differ from the recollection of 
entrepreneurs reported in the World Bank Enterprise 
Surveys or other perception surveys.
Subnational Doing Business indicators
This year Doing Business published a subnational study 
for the Philippines and a regional report for Southeast 
Europe covering 7 economies (Albania, Bosnia and 
Herzegovina, Kosovo, the former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro and Serbia) and 22 
cities. It also published a city profile for Juba, in  the 
Republic of South Sudan. 
The subnational studies point to differences in 
business regulation and its implementation—as well as 
in the pace of regulatory reform—across cities in the 
same economy. For several economies subnational 
studies are now periodically updated to measure 
change over time or to expand geographic coverage 
to additional cities. This year that is the case for the 
subnational studies in the Philippines; the regional 
report in Southeast Europe; the ongoing studies in 
Italy, Kenya and the United  Arab Emirates; and the 
projects implemented jointly with local think tanks in 
Indonesia, Mexico and the Russian Federation. 
Besides the subnational  Doing Business indicators, 
Doing Business conducted a pilot study this year on 
the second largest city in 3 large economies to assess 
within-country variations. The study collected data for 
Rio de Janeiro in addition to São Paulo in Brazil, for 
Beijing in addition to Shanghai in China and for St. 
Petersburg in addition to Moscow in Russia.
Changes in what is measured
The methodology for 3 of the  Doing Business topics 
was updated this year—getting credit, dealing with 
construction permits and paying taxes.  
First, for getting credit, the scoring of one of the 10 
components of the strength of legal rights index  was 
amended to recognize additional protections of 
secured creditors and borrowers. Previously the 
highest score of 1 was assigned if secured creditors 
were not subject to an automatic stay or moratorium 
on enforcement procedures when a debtor entered a 
court-supervised reorganization procedure. Now the 
highest score of 1 is also assigned if the law provides 
secured creditors with grounds for relief from an 95 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
automatic stay or moratorium (for example, if the 
movable property is in danger) or sets a time limit for 
the automatic stay. 
Second, because the ease of doing business index now 
includes the getting electricity indicators, procedures, 
time and cost related to obtaining an electricity 
connection were removed from the dealing with 
construction permits indicators. 
Third, a threshold has been introduced for the total tax 
rate for the purpose of calculating the ranking on the 
ease of paying taxes. All economies with a total tax 
rate below the threshold (which will be calculated and 
adjusted on a yearly basis) will now receive the same 
ranking on the total tax rate indicator. The threshold is 
not based on any underlying theory. Instead, it is 
meant to emphasize the purpose of the indicator: to 
highlight economies where the tax burden on business 
is high relative to the tax burden in other economies. 
Giving the same ranking to all economies whose total 
tax rate is below the threshold avoids awarding 
economies in the scoring for having an unusually low 
total tax rate, often for reasons unrelated to 
government policies toward enterprises. For example, 
economies that are very small or that are rich in 
natural resources do not need to levy broad-based 
taxes. 
Data challenges and revisions
Most laws and regulations underlying the  Doing 
Business data are available on  the  Doing Business
website at http://www.doingbusiness.org. All the 
sample  questionnaires and the details underlying the 
indicators are also published on the website. Questions 
on the methodology and challenges to data can be 
submitted through the website’s ―Ask a Question‖ 
function at http://www.doingbusiness.org. 
Ease of doing business and distance to 
frontier
This year’s report presents results for 2 aggregate 
measures: the aggregate ranking on the ease of doing 
business and a new measure, the ―distance to frontier.‖ 
While the ease of doing business ranking compares 
economies with one another at a point in time, the 
distance to frontier measure shows how much the 
regulatory environment for local entrepreneurs in each 
economy has changed over time.
Ease of doing business
The ease of doing business index ranks economies 
from 1 to 183. For each economy the ranking is 
calculated as the simple average of the percentile 
rankings on each of the 10 topics included in the index 
in  Doing Business 2012: starting a  business, dealing 
with construction permits, registering property, getting 
credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, trading 
across borders, enforcing contracts, resolving 
insolvency and, new this year, getting electricity. The 
employing workers indicators are not included in this 
year’s aggregate ease of doing business ranking.  In 
addition to this year’s ranking, Doing Business presents 
a comparable ranking for the previous year, adjusted 
for any changes in methodology as well as additions of 
economies or topics.
4
Construction of the ease of doing business index 
Here is one example of how the ease of doing business 
index is constructed. In the Republic of Korea it takes 5 
procedures, 7 days and 14.6% of annual income per 
capita in fees to open a business. There is no minimum 
capital required. On these 4 indicators Korea ranks in 
the 18
th
,  14
th
, 53
rd
and 0 percentiles. So on average 
Korea ranks in the 21
st
percentile on the ease of 
starting  a business. It ranks in the 12
th
percentile on 
getting credit, 25
th
percentile on paying taxes, 8
th
percentile on enforcing contracts, 7
th
percentile on 
resolving insolvency and so on. Higher rankings 
indicate simpler regulation and stronger protection of 
property rights. The simple average of Korea’s 
percentile rankings on all topics is 21
st
. When all 
economies are ordered by their average percentile 
rankings, Korea stands at  8  in the aggregate ranking 
on the ease of doing business. 
More complex aggregation methods—such as 
principal components and unobserved components—
                                                     
4
In case of revisions to the methodology or corrections to the 
underlying data, the data are back-calculated to provide a 
comparable time series since the year the relevant economy or topic 
was first included in the data set. The time series is available on the 
Doing Business website  (http://www.doingbusiness.org). The  Doing 
Business report publishes yearly rankings for the year of publication 
as well as the previous year to shed light on year-to-year 
developments. Six topics and more than 50 economies have been 
added since the inception of the project. Earlier rankings on the ease 
of doing business are therefore not comparable.96 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
yield a ranking nearly identical to the simple average 
used by  Doing Business.
5
    Thus, Doing Business uses 
the simplest method: weighting all topics equally and, 
within each topic, giving equal weight to each of the 
topic components.
6
If an economy has no laws or regulations covering a 
specific area—for example, insolvency—it receives a 
―no practice‖ mark. Similarly, an economy receives a 
―no practice‖ or ―not possible‖ mark if regulation exists 
but is never used in practice or if a competing 
regulation prohibits such practice. Either way, a ―no 
practice‖ mark puts the economy at the bottom of the 
ranking on the relevant indicator. 
The ease of doing business index is limited in scope. It 
does not account for an economy’s proximity to large 
markets, the quality of its infrastructure services (other 
than services related to trading across borders and 
getting electricity), the strength of its financial system, 
the security of property from theft and looting, its 
macroeconomic conditions or the strength of 
underlying institutions. 
Variability of economies’ rankings across topics 
Each indicator set measures a different aspect of the 
business regulatory environment. The rankings of an 
economy can vary, sometimes significantly, across 
indicator sets. The average  correlation coefficient 
between the 10 indicator sets included in the 
aggregate ranking is 0.36, and the coefficients 
between any 2 sets of indicators range from 0.17
(between  protecting investors and getting electricity) 
to 0.57 (between  starting a business and protecting 
investors). These correlations suggest that economies 
rarely score universally well or universally badly on the 
indicators. 
                                                     
5
See  Simeon Djankov, Darshini Manraj,  Caralee McLiesh and Rita 
Ramalho, ―Doing Business Indicators: Why Aggregate, and How to 
Do It‖ (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005). Principal components 
and unobserved components methods yield a ranking nearly 
identical to that from the simple average method because both 
these methods assign roughly equal weights to the topics, since the 
pairwise correlations among indicators do not differ much. An 
alternative to the simple average method is to give different weights 
to the topics, depending on which are considered of more or less 
importance in the context of a specific economy.
6
A technical note on the different aggregation and weighting 
methods is available on the  Doing Business  website 
(http://www.doingbusiness.org).
Consider the example of Canada. It stands at 12 in the 
aggregate ranking on the ease of  doing business. Its 
ranking is 3 on both starting a business and resolving 
insolvency, and 5  on protecting investors. But its 
ranking is only 59 on enforcing contracts, 42 on 
trading across borders and 156 on getting electricity. 
Variation in performance across the indicator sets is 
not at all unusual. It reflects differences in the degree 
of priority that government authorities give to 
particular areas of business regulation reform and the 
ability of different government agencies to deliver 
tangible results in their area of responsibility.
Economies that improved the most across 3 or more
Doing Business topics in 2010/11
Doing Business 2012 uses a simple method to calculate 
which economies improved the most in the ease of 
doing business. First, it selects the economies that in 
2010/11 implemented regulatory reforms making it 
easier to do business in 3 or more of the 10 topics 
included in this year’s ease of doing business ranking.
7
  
Thirty economies meet this criterion: Armenia, Burkina 
Faso, Burundi, Cape Verde, the Central African 
Republic, Chile, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of 
Congo, Côte d'Ivoire,  The Gambia, Georgia, Korea, 
Latvia, Liberia,  FYR Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, 
Montenegro, Morocco, Nicaragua, Oman, Peru, Russia, 
São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, 
Slovenia,  the Solomon Islands, South Africa and 
Ukraine. Second,  Doing Business  ranks these 
economies on the increase in their ranking on the ease 
of doing business from the previous year using 
comparable rankings. 
Selecting the economies that implemented regulatory 
reforms in at least 3 topics and improved the most in 
the aggregate ranking is intended to highlight 
economies with ongoing, broad-based reform 
programs.
Distance to frontier measure 
This year’s report introduces a new measure to 
illustrate how the regulatory environment for local 
businesses in each economy has changed over time. 
The distance to frontier measure illustrates the 
distance of an economy to the ―frontier‖ and shows
                                                     
7
Doing Business reforms making it more difficult to do business are 
subtracted from the total number of those making it easier to do 
business.97 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
the extent to which the economy has closed this gap 
over time. The frontier is a score derived from the most 
efficient practice or highest score achieved on each of 
the component indicators in 9 Doing Business indicator 
sets (excluding the employing workers and getting 
electricity indicators) by any economy since 2005. In 
starting a business, for example, New Zealand has 
achieved the highest performance on the time (1 day), 
Canada and New Zealand on the number of 
procedures required (1), Denmark and Slovenia on the 
cost (0% of income per capita) and Australia on the 
paid-in  minimum capital requirement (0% of income 
per capita).
Calculating the distance to frontier for each economy 
involves 2 main steps. First, individual indicator scores 
are normalized to a common unit. To do so, each of 
the 32 component indicators  y is rescaled to (y −
min)/(max  − min), with the minimum value (min) 
representing the frontier—the highest performance on 
that indicator across all economies since 2005. Second, 
for each economy the scores obtained for individual 
indicators are aggregated through simple averaging 
into one distance to frontier score. An economy’s 
distance to the frontier is indicated on a scale from 0 
to 100, where 0 represents the frontier and 100 the 
lowest performance. 
The difference between an economy’s distance to 
frontier score in 2005 and its score in 2011 illustrates 
the extent to which the economy has closed the gap to 
the frontier over time. 
The maximum (max) and minimum (min) observed 
values are computed for the 174 economies included 
in the  Doing Business sample since 2005 and for all 
years (from 2005 to 2011). The year 2005 was chosen 
as the baseline for the economy sample because it was 
the first year in which data were available for the 
majority of economies (a total of 174) and for all 9 
indicator sets included in the measure. To mitigate the 
effects of extreme outliers in the distributions of the 
rescaled data (very few economies need 694 days to 
complete the procedures to start a business, but many 
need 9 days), the maximum (max) is defined as the 95
th
percentile of the pooled data for all economies and all 
years for each indicator.
Take Colombia, which has a score of 0.21 on the 
distance to frontier measure for 2011. This score 
indicates that the economy is 21 percentage points 
away from the frontier constructed from  the best 
performances across all economies and all years. 
Colombia was further from the frontier in 2005, with a 
score of 0.43. The difference between the scores shows 
an improvement over time.98 Doing Business 2012 St. Lucia
RESOURCES ON THE DOING BUSINESS WEBSITE
Current features
News on the Doing Business project 
Rankings
How economies rank—from 1 to 183 
Reports 
Access to  Doing Business reports as well as 
subnational and regional reports, reform case 
studies and customized economy and regional 
profiles
http://www.doingbusiness.org/reports/
Methodology 
The methodologies and research papers 
underlying Doing Business
Research
Abstracts of papers on  Doing Business topics 
and related policy issues
http://www.doingbusiness.org/research/ 
Doing Business reforms 
Short summaries of DB2012 business regulation 
reforms, lists of reforms since DB2008 and a 
ranking simulation tool
Historical data
Customized data sets since DB2004 
Law library
Online collection of business laws and 
regulations relating to business and gender 
issues
Contributors
More than 9,000 specialists in 183 economies 
who participate in Doing Business
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