3 Reasons why South Africa is one of the toughest places in the world to collect unpaid debts.

Trade credit insurer Euler Hermes has released its ‘Collection Complexity Score and Rating report’ for 2018, which looks at the ease of collecting of unpaid debts across the world.

The aim of the report is to provide a simple assessment of debt collection proceedings in each country, helping to support decisions and manage expectations when trading internationally, Euler Hermes said.

Three main factors were analyzed: local payment practices, local court proceedings and local insolvency proceedings.

Typically, Western European countries lead the pack when it comes to simplifying the life of companies trying to recover their dues. Sweden, Germany and Ireland take the lead, ranking as the least complex countries with respective scores of 30, 30 and 31.

The region also presents the highest number and share of countries at a “notable” collection complexity. 14 out of 16 countries stand at the ‘less severe’ level, the exceptions being Greece and Italy, (both rated as high level of collection complexity).

The Middle East stands at the opposite end of the spectrum with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates ranking as the most complex countries when it comes to debt collection. With a score of 94, international debt collection is three times more complex in Saudi Arabia than in Sweden.