Singapore Skyline
Singapore has topped the World Bank's 'Doing Business' ranking for nine years. Reuters

Singapore has retained its top spot in the World Bank's ranking of the best countries to do business in, while China and the UK both improved their positions.

The UK rose to eighth place from 10th, swapping with Finland which dropped to ninth, but the rest of the top 10 remained the same, with the US staying put in at seventh.

Top 10 territories to do business

  1. Singapore
  2. New Zealand
  3. Hong Kong SAR, China
  4. Denmark
  5. Republic of Korea
  6. Norway
  7. United States
  8. United Kingdom
  9. Finland
  10. Australia

Source: World Bank Doing Business

China improved its ranking by three spots, after the World Bank rated the world's second-biggest economy as the 90th best place to do business. Japan, however, slipped two spots to 29th, according to the report.

Overall, the Doing Business 2015 report showed that it is becoming easier to business across the world overall, including advanced economies and those considered to be emerging and frontier economies.

"The countries with the worst business practices, with the most difficult and costly procedures, with the weakest institutions" are catching up with the best performers, according to World Bank director of global indicators and analysis Augusto Lopez-Claros, as quoted by Bloomberg. "This is the most encouraging."

Among the top 10 most improved destinations were five Sub-Saharan countries, while the region scored highly for implementing regulatory reforms aimed at facilitating business.

New Zealand was ranked as the second-best place to do business, followed by Hong Kong, Denmark and South Korea, while Singapore remained the top-ranked destination for the ninth year in a row.