According to the World Bank, India’s rank on ‘ease of doing business’ scale has risen from 130th to 100th this year, helped by a slew of reforms in taxation, licensing, investor protection and bankruptcy resolution.
The “highest jump” in ranking was possible as significant improvements in all the 10 judging parameters were made in last 3-4 years “so that it becomes easy to do business in India,” he added.
The World Bank, he said, has named 10 countries where structural reforms have been taken and “India is one of them.”
The World Bank says India still lags in areas such as starting a business, enforcing contracts and dealing with construction permits.It takes 30 days now to register a new business, down from 127 days 15 years ago, but “the number of procedures is still cumbersome for local entrepreneurs who still need to go through 12 procedures”, it said.
Elaborating on the ranking, he said there have been significant improvement parameters such as protecting minority investors interest after changes were made in company law. “We are now ranked 4th in the world. This is the biggest jump in this field.”
In availability of credit, India is ranked 29th. “Biggest jump is that improvements which we have done on the taxation front. Till last year, out of 189 nations, we were 172nd. It means paying taxes were a very cumbersome process and we were down. But this year we have moved up 53 places,” he said.
The ranking does not include the impact implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) has created as the cut off for judging the business environment was June 1. “In the coming years, we are expecting to get the credit for this,” he said. Besides, there are some areas where the government has done a lot of work and work was still in progress, which will get reflected in numbers in coming 1-2 years, he said. Giving examples, he said India is ranked low at 164th in the enforcement of contracts but with arbitration, act will help improve this.
Similarly, states are being impressed upon to give building construction permits online and fast permissions are handed out.
The finance minister said the government was seriously taking up the 3-4 issues where India still lags behind so that in next 1-2 years there is an improvement of 20-30 points in the ranking. “If you see the first available data for August and now September, I think every data that is coming out seems to be in the more positive zone,” he said. Mr. Jaitley said that reforms are a continuous process.
The CSR Journal Team