Choosing a new location to launch or expand a business is fraught with risk. Without forensic local knowledge, the investor could be exposed to hidden costs, sub-standard infrastructure and political instability.
The Global Dynamism Index from accounting giants Grant Thornton provides a breakdown of the business growth environment in the world's leading economies, using 22 indicators to assess their strengths in finance availability, labor market, technology, market growth and business operating environment.
The study rates Singapore the top destination, up six places from the previous year. The island boasts the world's best financing environment and scored solidly on all other indicators. Singapore Tourism Board
Israel made another sharp rise, up six places from last year's ranking. The self-styled "startup nation" is in first place for technology and has one of the best finance environments, according to the report. JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images
Australia dropped down two places but still ranks in the top five for business operating environment and labor market, supported by rapid growth in its two most dynamic cities - Sydney and Melbourne. JOEL SAGET/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
The emergence of Helsinki as a leading tech hub helps the Nordic nation share third place with Australia. It ranks in the top five for technology, finance and business operating environment. Shutterstock
Like neighboring Finland, Sweden's strengths are in its technology and operating environment, despite relatively high taxes. It has risen four places on last year's position of nine. Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images Europe/Getty Images
The fastest-rising entrant is up 27 places, driven by sharp improvements in market growth and technology. Investors anticipate these trends will continue. Todd Baxter/CNN
Another rising European state, Switzerland is providing more evidence of the continent's recovery from the financial crisis. Business here benefits from a dynamic financial sector and a hospitable operating environment. FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Oil-rich Norway is an increasingly attractive destination, rising two places thanks to its excellent infrastructure, a strong labor market and a healthy finance environment. ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images
Canada is the highest ranked entrant from either American continent. It has the world's best business operating environment, according to the report, but still fell two places from last year. CNN
The densely populated island of Taiwan scores highly for its technology and labor market, rising nine places to reach the top 10. Ashley Pon/Getty Images