Best Countries for Business in 2023: Business Expansion Guide

Best Countries for Business in 2023: Business Expansion Guide

For any foreign entrepreneur looking to expand their business, identifying the best countries for business is absolutely critical. The success of your business will depend heavily on making the right choice, so it’s imperative that you explore this area thoroughly. Don’t leave anything to chance – take the time to properly research and assess your options. In this comprehensive guide, you will discover the top 10 business expansion destinations, along with a critical factor to consider when selecting.

The Key to a Successful Business Expansion

One of the most important aspects is to choose a country that has suitable business immigration programs for you, your business, and your family. The reason is that in almost every case where a foreign business is expanding to a new country, the founders of that business or senior executives will need to be on-site to establish the new operations. In our business expansion experience, a country that has favourable business immigration pathways will make the entire business expansion process easy and efficient for you.

Top 10 Best Countries for Business in 2023

Now that you know what to look for when researching your next country for business expansion, let’s take a look at some of the best destinations for your business.

    1. Canada
    2. United States
    3. Germany
    4. Singapore
    5. Australia
    6. United Arab Emirates
    7. United Kingdom
    8. Ireland
    9. New Zealand
    10. China

Canada: A Friendly Neighbour to the North

Canada offers arguably one of the best destinations for business expansion. Foreign entrepreneurs could obtain PR and citizenship in Canada by expanding their existing business to Canada! The country has a stable economy, a high standard of living, and excellent trade relationships with countries around the world, including its southern neighbour, the United States! Not to mention, Canada was recently ranked as 2nd best country to live in the world.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #1 Canada Graphic

Why Canada?

  • Stable Economy – Canada boasts a strong and stable economy, ranked among the top in the G20. A strong and stable economy is favourable for entrepreneurs as it helps to ensure the safety of your investment.
  • Permanent Residency and Citizenship for Foreign Investors – Foreign entrepreneurs, business owners, and investors could be eligible for PR and citizenship by expanding their existing business, buying an existing one, or starting a new one in Canada.
  • Free Trade Agreements – Being part of CUSMA (ex-NAFTA) and having multiple trade agreements make Canada an attractive option for exporters. Canada has international trade agreements with 51 countries, including the countries in the Asia-Pacific region. Canada is the only G7 country to have free trade agreements with all G7 countries! Such international trade agreements allow Canadian businesses easy access to global markets like the U.S. and the E.U. and anywhere else in the world!

Business Expansion Programs

  • Intra-Company Transfer Program – The ICT scheme is well-suited for international businesses that either have a presence in Canada or are planning to establish one. This immigration pathway for businesses enables the intra-company transfer of staff from overseas locations to Canadian branches. Those relocated under this program receive a temporary work permit, and typically, they can apply for permanent residency after a year of working in Canada.
  • Start-Up Visa Program – Through Canada’s Start-Up Visa initiative, as many as five key founders of an inventive overseas enterprise may qualify for a work permit lasting up to three years. Moreover, these individuals can become candidates for permanent residency. The Start-Up Visa initiative mandates a supporting letter or a financial pledge from one of Canada’s authorized organizations.
  • C-11 Entrepreneur Stream – For global entrepreneurs keen on either investing in an existing Canadian venture or initiating a new one, the C11 Entrepreneur Stream is an excellent choice. Initially, entrepreneurs obtain a short-term work permit, granting them the license to run their enterprise in Canada. After successfully doing business for a year in the country, they may become eligible for permanent resident status.
  • LMIA Work Permit Program – Though the LMIA pathway also allows entrepreneurs and investors to get a work permit and potentially qualify for permanent residency after two years of working in Canada, it is more geared towards the recruitment of foreign employees. Generally, the previously discussed programs are favoured by those seeking to immigrate to Canada for investment or entrepreneurial reasons.


  • High Corporate Taxes – Canada has one of the highest corporate tax rates among developed countries.
  • Regulatory Complexities – The Canadian market comes with its own set of regulations that could be cumbersome to navigate.


United States: The Land of Opportunity

The U.S. has long been considered a melting pot of opportunities. It offers a massive consumer market, a skilled labour force, and an entrepreneurial culture that is hard to beat.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #2 United States Graphic

Why the United States?

  • Large and Diverse Market – The United States has one of the largest consumer markets in the world, allowing businesses access to a wide variety of customer demographics.
  • Robust Intellectual Property Rights – The U.S. offers strong protections for intellectual property, making it an ideal choice for technology and creative industries.
  • Investor-Friendly Environment – With a robust stock market and venture capital scene, the United States offers multiple avenues for business financing.

Business Expansion Programs

  • E-2 Treaty Investor – This visa allows foreign nationals from treaty countries to enter the U.S. to manage and direct a business.
  • EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program – Through this program, entrepreneurs (and their families) can become eligible for a green card by making a substantial investment in a U.S. commercial enterprise.

Learn about key differences between business immigration to Canada compared to the United States in our comprehensive guide.

Best Countries for Business Expansion - Canada vs United States Table


  • High Cost of Doing Business – From labour to real estate, the costs can quickly add up, especially in major cities like New York and San Francisco.
  • Complex Taxation System – Understanding and navigating the U.S. tax system can be a daunting task for new businesses.


Germany: Engineering the Future

Known for its engineering prowess and strong economy, Germany is a haven for businesses in the tech and manufacturing sectors. Its strategic location in Europe also makes it a prime hub for international operations.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #3 Germany Graphic

Why Germany?

  • Strong Manufacturing Sector – Germany is renowned for its engineering and manufacturing prowess, particularly in the automotive and machinery sectors.
  • Excellent Infrastructure – With one of the most efficient transportation networks in Europe, Germany offers excellent logistical advantages.
  • High Innovation Index – The country scores high on global innovation rankings, supported by a strong education system and research and development capabilities.

Business Expansion Programs

  • Blue Card EU for Skilled Professionals – This permits highly educated or skilled workers to live and work in Germany.
  • D-Visa – Allows entrepreneurs to obtain residency for the purpose of starting a business, subject to meeting certain conditions.


  • Language Barrier – German is the primary language of business, which can present challenges for non-German speakers.
  • Complicated Bureaucratic System – The regulatory environment can be difficult to navigate without local assistance.


Singapore: The Asian Powerhouse

Singapore stands out for its robust economy, ease of doing business, and strategic location in the heart of Asia. It’s a prime location for tech companies and offers excellent connectivity to other Asian markets.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #4 Singapore Graphic

Why Singapore?

  • Business-Friendly Regulatory Environment – Singapore consistently ranks high in ease of doing business, with simplified regulations and tax incentives for businesses.
  • Strategic Location for Asian Markets – Located at the crossroads of major shipping routes, Singapore is a logistical dream for businesses targeting the Asian market.
  • Highly Developed Infrastructure – From its airport to public transport, Singapore offers top-notch infrastructure facilities.

Business Expansion Programs

  • EntrePass – Designed for entrepreneurs wishing to start a new business in the country.
  • Global Investor Program (GIP) – Allows investors to either start a new business or invest in an existing one in Singapore.


  • Limited Market Size – The domestic market is small, making it necessary for most businesses to look abroad for substantial growth.
  • High Competition – Singapore’s business-friendly environment attracts many businesses, making certain sectors highly competitive.


Australia: Down Under Opportunities

Australia offers a high standard of living and a business-friendly environment. Its strong ties with Asia make it an attractive location for businesses looking to tap into Asian markets.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #5 Australia Graphic

Why Australia?

  • Robust Economy – Australia has a diverse and growing economy, with particular strength in natural resources, education, and tourism.
  • Quality of Life – The country offers a high standard of living, which can be an attractive point for potential employees.
  • Asia-Pacific Focus – Its geographic location makes it an excellent gateway to the rapidly growing Asia-Pacific markets.

Business Expansion Programs


  • Distance from Other Major Markets – Australia’s geographic isolation can make international trade more challenging.
  • High Operational Costs – High wages and operational costs can impact profitability.


United Arab Emirates: Middle Eastern Jewel

With its booming economy and business-friendly environment, the UAE is a hot spot for businesses looking to expand into the Middle East.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #6 UAE Graphic

Why UAE?

  • Zero Personal and Corporate Income Tax – The absence of these taxes makes the UAE an attractive option for entrepreneurs and businesses.
  • Business-Friendly Free Zones – These zones offer special economic conditions, including easier startup processes and various financial incentives.
  • Strategic Location – Positioned between Europe, Asia, and Africa, the UAE is a convenient base for international operations.

Business Expansion Programs

  • UAE Golden Visa – This offers long-term residency for investors, entrepreneurs, and skilled professionals.
  • Green Visa for Investors  – Allows foreign nationals to set up or co-own a business in the UAE.


  • Heavy Reliance on Oil Sector – While diversification is ongoing, the economy is still significantly reliant on the oil and gas sector.
  • Cultural and Legal Differences – Sharia law influences the legal system, and cultural differences can impact how business is done.


United Kingdom: Tradition Meets Innovation

Despite the uncertainties of Brexit, the UK remains a strong player in the global business arena. London is one of the world’s leading financial centers, and the country offers a skilled workforce and a strong tradition of innovation.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #7 United Kingdom Graphic

Why the UK?

  • Strategic Location – The U.K.’s proximity to European markets makes it an ideal location for businesses looking to expand into Europe.
  • Strong Legal and Financial Systems – The British legal system is one of the most business-friendly, and London is a global financial hub.
  • Skilled Workforce – The U.K. has a high level of educated and skilled workers, particularly in finance, engineering, and technology.

Business Expansion Programs

  • Innovator Visa – For experienced entrepreneurs setting up a business in the U.K.
  • Start-Up Visa – For early-stage entrepreneurs setting up a business for the first time in the U.K.


  • Uncertainties Surrounding Brexit – The terms of trade and commerce are still somewhat uncertain due to ongoing Brexit negotiations.
  • High Cost of Living – Living and operational costs in cities like London can be quite high.


Ireland: The European Tech Hub

Ireland has rapidly become a go-to destination for tech companies, thanks to its business-friendly environment and skilled workforce.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #8 Ireland Graphic

Why Ireland?

  • Strong Tech Industry – Ireland is a hub for technology companies, with many global giants like Google and Apple having their European headquarters here.
  • Favourable Tax Environment – With one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the European Union, Ireland is attractive for businesses looking to optimize their tax structures.
  • Skilled Workforce – Ireland has a highly educated workforce, particularly in sectors like technology, pharmaceuticals, and finance.

Business Expansion Programs


  • Smaller Market Size – While a member of the EU, Ireland itself is a relatively small market.
  • Economic Vulnerabilities – Being a small and open economy, it can be more susceptible to global economic shifts.


New Zealand: A Land of Untapped Potential

New Zealand offers a stable economy, a high standard of living, and a reputation for innovation. It is an ideal destination for businesses looking to tap into the Pacific market.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #9 New Zealand Graphic

Why New Zealand?

  • Ease of Doing Business – New Zealand consistently ranks high for its ease of starting and doing business.
  • Quality of Life – Known for its stunning landscapes and high standard of living, New Zealand can be an attractive destination for talent.
  • Growing Industries – Tourism, agriculture, and technology are among the industries experiencing significant growth.

Business Expansion Programs

  • Investor Visas – Offers two categories, Investor 1 and Investor 2, each with their own investment requirements and benefits.
  • Entrepreneur Visas – Designed for experienced businesspeople interested in operating a business in New Zealand.


  • Geographic Isolation – Its remote location can increase the cost and complexity of trade and travel.
  • Limited Market Size – New Zealand offers a relatively small domestic market.


China: The Sleeping Giant

China’s massive consumer market is hard to ignore. However, businesses must navigate complex regulations and cultural differences.

Key Statistics

Best Countries for Business Expansion - #10 China Graphic

Why China?

  • Huge Market Potential – With its vast population, China offers an enormous consumer market.
  • Rapid Technological Advancement – China is fast becoming a global leader in technology and innovation.
  • Manufacturing Capabilities – China’s manufacturing sector is one of the most developed in the world, providing ample opportunities for various industries.

Business Expansion Programs


  • Regulatory Complexity – China has a complex regulatory landscape that can be challenging for foreign businesses to navigate.
  • Intellectual Property Concerns – Enforcement of intellectual property rights can be inconsistent, posing risks for technology and creative industries.