Once again Spain ranked as one of the worst countries in OECD on which to start a business. A report by the World Bank Group states that Spain is among the bottom five counties of the 34 OECD countries, with only Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Poland with a worse place to start a company.
The report state that entrepreneurs in Spain often face complexity in setting up shop. One of the main challenges is to deal with many different levels of government, including the national government, the regions, the provinces and the municipalities, that may have different legislation and requirements.
Overall the report places Spain at number 33rd globally in regards to ease of doing business in general.
The Bright Side
Luckily its not only bad news for spanish entrepreneurs. Spain was among the economies in the world that made the greatest advances in tax payments systems the last two years. A new tax reform program in 2014 was introduced to help and encourage entrepreneurs and investors.
Did you miss this? Get to know mVentureBCN and the man behind it
The goal is to streamline and make tax compliance easier to reduce the tax burden.
The report stated the following about Spain’s improvements: “Spain made paying taxes less costly for companies by reducing rates for corporate income, capital gains and environment taxes—and made it easier by introducing the online Cl@ve system for filing VAT returns. At the same time, Spain reduced the amount allowable for depreciation of fixed assets and raised the ceiling for social security contributions”.
The Entrepreneurs Agree
Hard working entrepreneurs are not famous for complaining, but spanish entrepreneurs Barcinno talked to, do envy their colleges abroad when it comes to dealing with the government.
“I like to be positive about everything, but when I talk with people I know in London or in Australia, and hear how you can start up a business in a couple of days, I wish it could be better in Spain”, says Gloria Molins CEO and founder of the peer-to-peer experience startup Trip4real, based in Barcelona.
Juan Margenat the COO of Marfeel has also experienced difficulties with running a business in Spain.
“I know it can be hard for young companies to start up, especially for startups without the biggest network. The tax-system can also be hard on young companies, which have to pay a lot taxes even though their not making money”.
He continues to underline that starting up Marfeel in Spain as a local was the easiest thing, and he would never have chosen another place to set up shop. But he is aware of the existence of friendlier environments for startups in other countries.
Rewarded Not Punished
Both Molins and Margenat believe in Spain as a startup nation and think it has a huge potential, but the government needs to be on the same team as the entrepreneurs, Molins tells Barcinno.
“When I started up Trip4real I would liked to have more help from the government in the beginning, not only challenges”
“I think the government need to see the value young entrepreneurs and startups are for the country. I have created 10-20 jobs the last years, I think this should be rewarded not punished”, Molins continues.
Marfeels Margenat would like to have the government look at how it can be easier to bring foreign talent to Spain.
“Bringing workers from other countries to work in Spain is really hard, this is a thing the government really should think about improving”, says Margenat.