Hawaii Ranks Near Bottom for Doing Business — But Does It Matter?


Earlier this year, Hawaii gained the dubious distinction of having the worst traffic in the nation and some of the worst roads.

Now, the state can add another poor rating to the mix: a CNBC special report named Hawaii the second-to-worst state in the nation for business in 2012.

State officials weren't surprised by the news.

“We always rank at the bottom. It’s not something new,” said Eugene Tian, the economic research administrator at the Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism. Last year, Hawaii only did marginally better in the rankings — 48 out of 50.

Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz said that despite its predictability, the low score should still be cause for concern.

“It’s not enough just to agree we’re anti-business,” he said. “We have to change it.”

Dela Cruz said that because the state ranked at the bottom in almost every category, the study can't be ignored.

"If the rest of the world is looking at the rankings and they’re seeing that we’re anti-business, how are we going to attract investment?" Dela Cruz said.

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