Reforms helped China rise to 83 from 90 in the "Doing Business 2009" ranking by the World Bank , said the WB in a report on Wednesday.
The country's reforms made it easier to access credit, pay taxes and enforce contracts, said the report, the sixth in the annual series released by the WB and its private sector arm - the International Finance Corporation .
The report said regulatory reforms were gaining momentum worldwide. A record number of 239 countries and regions made reforms between June 2007 and June 2008. The top 10 reformers were Azerbaijan, Albania, Kyrgyz Republic, Belarus, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Botswana, Colombia, Dominican Republic and Egypt.
"Doing Business 2009" ranked 181 economies on the ease of doing business. Singapore kept its top ranking for the third year in a row. New Zealand was the runner-up, and the United States was in the third place.
Other high-ranking countries and territories in East Asia and the Pacific were China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia and South Korea.
The rankings were based on 10 indicators of business regulation that tracked the time and cost to meet government requirements in business start-up, operation, trade, taxation and closure.