Costa Rica

Ease of Doing Business in

Costa Rica

This page summarizes Doing Business 2014 data for Costa Rica. The first table lists the overall "Ease of Doing Business" rank (out of 189 economies) and the rankings by each topic. It also lists the economy's distance to frontier (DTF)** measure. The rest of the tables summarize the key indicators for each topic and benchmark against regional and high-income economy (OECD) averages.

Economy Overview

Region Latin America & Caribbean
Income Category Upper middle income
Population 4,805,295
GNI Per Capita (US$) 8,740
City covered San José
Doing Business 2014 Rank Doing Business 2013 Rank*** Change in Rank
102 109 down 7

Doing Business 2014 DTF** (% points) Doing Business 2013 DTF** (% points) Change in DTF** (% points)
61.92 59.65 down 2.27
Positive=Doing Business reform making it easier to do business. Negative=Doing Business reform making it more difficult to do business.

Starting a Business


The challenges of launching a business are shown below. Included are: the number of steps entrepreneurs can expect to go through to launch, the time it takes on average, and the cost and minimum capital required as a percentage of gross national income (GNI) per capita.

DB 2014 Rank 102 DB 2013 Rank*** 126 Change in Rank up24
DB 2014 DTF** (% points) 79.44 DB 2013 DTF** (% points) 66.25 Change in DTF** (% points) up13.19

Information on new business density and number of newly created firms with limited liability can be found at Entrepreneurship Database.

Indicator Costa Rica Latin America & Caribbean OECD

The total number of procedures required to register a firm. A procedure is defined as any interaction of the company founders with external parties (for example, government agencies, lawyers, auditors or notaries).

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Procedures (number)
9 9 5

The total number of days required to register a firm. The measure captures the median duration that incorporation lawyers indicate is necessary to complete a procedure with minimum follow-up with government agencies and no extra payments.

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Time (days)
24.0 36.1 11.1

Cost is recorded as a percentage of the economy’s income per capita. It includes all official fees and fees for legal or professional services if such services are required by law.

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Cost (% of income per capita)
9.5 33.1 3.6

The amount that the entrepreneur needs to deposit in a bank or with a notary before registration and up to 3 months following incorporation and is recorded as a percentage of the economy’s income per capita.

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Paid-in Min. Capital (% of income per capita)
0.0 3.6 10.4
No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs
1 Check the availability of the proposed company name Less than one day (online procedure) no charge
2 A notary public drafts and notarizes public deeds of the incorporation charter for registration before the Mercantile Section of the Public Registry online Less than one day (online procedure) 150000
3 Deposit capital in the bank account, pay registration fees and stamp duties 1 day see comments
4 Register the incorporation charter in the mercantile section of the public registry and obtain authorization to legalize the company books; send the notice of constitution of the company (edicto) 1 day CRC 5,000 (digital registration fees) + CRC 6,580 (edicto)
5 File Form D-140 with the before the Tax Department to register the firm as a taxpayer 2 days see comment
6 Register for labor risk insurance with the National Insurance Institute (Instituto Nacional de Seguros) 1 day no charge
7 Apply for sanitary permit 1 day USD 30
8 Register the company as an employer with Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS, Social Security Institution) 1 day no charge
9 Apply for the business license (patente municipale) from the municipality 15 days Cost varies between CRC 10,000 and CRC 100,000 depending on the type of activity, number of employees and location.

** The distance to frontier (DTF) measure shows the distance of each economy to the "frontier," which represents the highest performance observed on each of the topics including Getting Electricity across all economies included in Doing Business. An economy’s distance to frontier is indicated on a scale from 0 to 100, where 0 represents the lowest performance and 100 the frontier. Read more...

***Last year's rankings are adjusted: they are based on 10 topics and reflect data corrections.

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