The annual Paying Taxes survey from the World Bank Group (part of its larger Doing Business report) indicates that Romanian businesses last year could be asked to make up to a total of 113 separate tax payments – significantly in excess of the average 13 payments per year made by companies in OECD high-income countries. The annual World Bank Doing Business report assesses regulations affecting domestic firms in 183 economies, ranking each on the basis of various criteria including ease of starting a business, insolvency resolution, cross-border trade and, for the first time, ease of access to electricity. Russell Bedford member firms have contributed to the report’s Paying Taxes survey since 2009, with 51 member and correspondent firms this year contributing data on tax regulation, compliance and the real tax burden on businesses and entrepreneurs. It’s not all grim reading, however. This year’s report, Doing Business 2012: Doing Business in a More Transparent World, makes clear that the emerging economies of Eastern Europe and Central Asia have done most to reduce the tax burden on companies – in terms of both reducing compliance requirements and lowering the total tax rate – and cites Romania as among those countries having merged or eliminated taxes other than profit tax. Moreover, while Romanian companies may be subject to a greater number of individual payments, the amount of time this takes is not that much greater than that of their west European peers. Romanian firms spend an average of 222 hours per year on tax compliance, compared to 186 hours for businesses in OECD high-income countries.