Benin - Impact Evaluation of the Entreprenant Status in Benin 2014-2016

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The informal sector is predominant across Sub-Saharan Africa. In Benin, informality is particularly high: in 2009, the national statistics agency estimated that the informal sector represented up to 70 percent of the GDP and 95 percent of employment. In April 2014, the Government of Benin launched the pilot phase of Entreprenant Status, a simplified and free legal regime offered to small informal businesses to enter the formal economy. Entreprenant Status provision was added to General Commercial Law of OHADA (Organisation for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa) in 2010. The law does not mention the specific combination of incentives that will be included in the Entreprenant Status (for example, tax, credit, business registration, social security benefits), allowing instead each country to fill in the gap. Benin, a member of OHADA, with the support from the World Bank, has been working on legal and administrative regulation that will define the Entreprenant Status. From 2014 to 2016 experts from the World Bank Group, carried out a randomized impact evaluation, testing three different versions of the entreprenant status. 3,600 informal businesses were randomly allocated between three treatment groups and one control group. The research team tested such incentives as facilitating businesses' links to government training programs, support to open bank accounts, and tax mediation services. Formalizing in Benin means to choose a legal status and register at the chamber of commerce, GUFE (Guichet Unique de Formalisation des Entreprises). The entreprenant pilot program was completed in February 2015. The team carried out a baseline listing survey and data collection in September 2014. The midline data was collected in April-June 2015, and endline data - in May-June 2016. Administrative data and focus groups were also used in the study. Upon completion of the impact evaluation, the package of incentives that result in the highest number of business formalizations will be scaled up and adopted by the government as the official entreprenant status. New insights gained from the project will also inform the shaping of the entreprenant status in other OHADA member countries. The study will also explore whether the granting of the entreprenant status is more effective for women entrepreneurs, thus contributing to women’s empowerment, and inclusive growth.

Type: 
Microdata
Acronym: 
ESBIE 2014-16
Languages Supported: 
English
Topics: 
Topic not specified
Geographical Coverage: 
Benin
Release Date: 
March 23, 2017

Last Updated

Last Updated: 
March 23, 2017

Harvest System ID

Harvest System ID: 
Microdata

Harvest Source ID

Harvest Source ID: 
9282
Version Description: 
v01, datasets for public distribution with person identifying information removed.Three main sources of data were used for this study: administrative data on formalization and program implementation, in-person quantitative surveys with business owners, and qualitative data with study participants and implementing agencies.If users want to replicate results published in the paper "Can Enhancing the Benefits of Formalization Induce Informal Firms to Become Formal?" they can use do files distributed with the datasets. To make the process easier, authors of the research advise to use the file structure embedded in the zip file "Datasets, Replication Do Files and Instructions" available after users select "Get Microdata" tab.
Funding Name, Abbreviation, Role: 
World Bank Group; Strategic Research Program; Impact Evaluation to Development Impact Trust Fund; Private Enterprise Development for Low-Income Countries
Study Type: 
Informal Sector Survey [hh/iss]
Unit of Analysis: 
- Informal business
Primary Investigator Name, Affiliation: 
David McKenzie - World Bank Group; Massimiliano Santini - World Bank Group; Najy Benhassine - World Bank Group; Victor Pouliquen - World Bank Group and Paris School of Economics
Sampling Procedure: 
A listing survey was conducted in Benin's largest city of Cotonou in March and April 2014. This survey was designed in order to obtain a representative sample of all businesses operating in Cotonou, including Dantokpa market. All businesses with fixed location, except international and nationwide companies and liberal professions, were targeted. Overall, 19,246 businesses were listed, of which a sample of 7,945 were surveyed. Researchers then dropped businesses which were already formal, and which had very high or very low profits and sales to arrive at a sample of 3,596. The randomization was done in the office using STATA and the following methodology was used for stratification: - 16 strata were created using the following variables: business owner gender, business operating in Dantokpa market, trader, and business owns a bank account. - Inside each stratum a Z-score was created as the average of standardized profits, turnover and number of employees. Based on this Z-score, triplets of businesses were created and inside each triplet, businesses were randomly allocated to 3 groups, each of 1,200 firms. - The 1,200 businesses in one group were then randomly allocated further into a first treatment group with 301 businesses, and second treatment group with 899 businesses. As a result, 301 businesses were allocated to receive package A (treatment group 1), 899 to receive packages A and B (treatment group 2), 1,199 to receive packages A, B, and C (treatment group 3), and 1,197 to the control group.
Response Rates: 
Among those 19,246 businesses, 9,938 businesses were randomly selected to be surveyed. 7,945 (80%) businesses were successfully surveyed, 1,000 (10%) businesses refused to be surveyed, and 995 (10%) businesses were dropped because the business owner was not available or not reached after 4 attempts.
Questionnaires: 
Baseline Listing, Midline Survey Questionnaire and Endline Survey Questionnaire in French and English translation.
Time Periods: 
August, 2017

No Visualizations Available.

Use of the dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include: - the Identification of the Primary Investigator - the title of the survey (including country, acronym and year of implementation) - the survey reference number - the source and date of download. Example, David McKenzie, Massimiliano Santini, Najy Benhassine, World Bank Group; Victor Pouliquen, World Bank Group and Paris School of Economics. Impact Evaluation of the Entreprenant Status in Benin 2014-2016, Ref. BEN_2014-2016_ESBIE_v01_M. Dataset downloaded from [url] on [date].

The informal sector is predominant across Sub-Saharan Africa. In Benin, informality is particularly high: in 2009, the national statistics agency estimated that the informal sector represented up to 70 percent of the GDP and 95 percent of employment. In April 2014, the Government of Benin launched the pilot phase of Entreprenant Status, a simplified and free legal regime offered to small informal businesses to enter the formal economy. Entreprenant Status provision was added to General Commercial Law of OHADA (Organisation for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa) in 2010. The law does not mention the specific combination of incentives that will be included in the Entreprenant Status (for example, tax, credit, business registration, social security benefits), allowing instead each country to fill in the gap. Benin, a member of OHADA, with the support from the World Bank, has been working on legal and administrative regulation that will define the Entreprenant Status. From 2014 to 2016 experts from the World Bank Group, carried out a randomized impact evaluation, testing three different versions of the entreprenant status. 3,600 informal businesses were randomly allocated between three treatment groups and one control group. The research team tested such incentives as facilitating businesses' links to government training programs, support to open bank accounts, and tax mediation services. Formalizing in Benin means to choose a legal status and register at the chamber of commerce, GUFE (Guichet Unique de Formalisation des Entreprises). The entreprenant pilot program was completed in February 2015. The team carried out a baseline listing survey and data collection in September 2014. The midline data was collected in April-June 2015, and endline data - in May-June 2016. Administrative data and focus groups were also used in the study. Upon completion of the impact evaluation, the package of incentives that result in the highest number of business formalizations will be scaled up and adopted by the government as the official entreprenant status. New insights gained from the project will also inform the shaping of the entreprenant status in other OHADA member countries. The study will also explore whether the granting of the entreprenant status is more effective for women entrepreneurs, thus contributing to women’s empowerment, and inclusive growth.

FieldValue
Modified Date
2017-09-05
Release Date
Identifier
b9b146d5-f135-45e4-a3c3-31aa23d1750e
License
License Not Specified
Contact Email
Rating: 
0
No votes yet
Acronym: 
ESBIE 2014-16
Type: 
Languages Supported: 
Response Rates: 
Among those 19,246 businesses, 9,938 businesses were randomly selected to be surveyed. 7,945 (80%) businesses were successfully surveyed, 1,000 (10%) businesses refused to be surveyed, and 995 (10%) businesses were dropped because the business owner was not available or not reached after 4 attempts.
Time Periods: 
August, 2017
Primary Investigator Name, Affiliation: 
David McKenzie - World Bank Group; Massimiliano Santini - World Bank Group; Najy Benhassine - World Bank Group; Victor Pouliquen - World Bank Group and Paris School of Economics
Funding Name, Abbreviation, Role: 
World Bank Group; Strategic Research Program; Impact Evaluation to Development Impact Trust Fund; Private Enterprise Development for Low-Income Countries
Terms of Use: 
Version Description: 
v01, datasets for public distribution with person identifying information removed.Three main sources of data were used for this study: administrative data on formalization and program implementation, in-person quantitative surveys with business owners, and qualitative data with study participants and implementing agencies.If users want to replicate results published in the paper "Can Enhancing the Benefits of Formalization Induce Informal Firms to Become Formal?" they can use do files distributed with the datasets. To make the process easier, authors of the research advise to use the file structure embedded in the zip file "Datasets, Replication Do Files and Instructions" available after users select "Get Microdata" tab.
Unit of Analysis: 
- Informal business
Geographical Coverage: 
Data Classification of a Dataset: 
Sampling Procedure: 
A listing survey was conducted in Benin's largest city of Cotonou in March and April 2014. This survey was designed in order to obtain a representative sample of all businesses operating in Cotonou, including Dantokpa market. All businesses with fixed location, except international and nationwide companies and liberal professions, were targeted. Overall, 19,246 businesses were listed, of which a sample of 7,945 were surveyed. Researchers then dropped businesses which were already formal, and which had very high or very low profits and sales to arrive at a sample of 3,596. The randomization was done in the office using STATA and the following methodology was used for stratification: - 16 strata were created using the following variables: business owner gender, business operating in Dantokpa market, trader, and business owns a bank account. - Inside each stratum a Z-score was created as the average of standardized profits, turnover and number of employees. Based on this Z-score, triplets of businesses were created and inside each triplet, businesses were randomly allocated to 3 groups, each of 1,200 firms. - The 1,200 businesses in one group were then randomly allocated further into a first treatment group with 301 businesses, and second treatment group with 899 businesses. As a result, 301 businesses were allocated to receive package A (treatment group 1), 899 to receive packages A and B (treatment group 2), 1,199 to receive packages A, B, and C (treatment group 3), and 1,197 to the control group.
Release Date: 
Thursday, March 23, 2017
Last Updated Date: 
Thursday, March 23, 2017
Questionnaires: 
Baseline Listing, Midline Survey Questionnaire and Endline Survey Questionnaire in French and English translation.
Harvest Source: 
Harvest System ID: 
9282
Citation Text: 
Use of the dataset must be acknowledged using a citation which would include: - the Identification of the Primary Investigator - the title of the survey (including country, acronym and year of implementation) - the survey reference number - the source and date of download. Example, David McKenzie, Massimiliano Santini, Najy Benhassine, World Bank Group; Victor Pouliquen, World Bank Group and Paris School of Economics. Impact Evaluation of the Entreprenant Status in Benin 2014-2016, Ref. BEN_2014-2016_ESBIE_v01_M. Dataset downloaded from [url] on [date].
Modified date: 
17248
Study Type: 
Informal Sector Survey [hh/iss]
Primary Dataset: 
Yes
Mode of Data Collection: 

Face-to-face

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