India has moved one rank up to the 130th position in the World Bank’s ‘ease of doing business’ ranking for 2017. This marginal improvement came on the back of slight improvement in four indicators — getting electricity, enforcing contracts, trading across borders and registering property.
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“Over the past two years, the government has implemented a host of reforms to make it easier for businesses to start, operate and exit. It is therefore disappointing that these achievements are not covered by the report due to methodological issues. The government has engaged with the World Bank multiple times in the process, and is hopeful that they will take into account all the implemented reforms in future reports,” said a government statement. India was last year ranked on 130th among 190 economies that were assessed over ten parameters.
Ramesh Abhishek, secretary, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), said on Tuesday that a dozen of important reforms like enactment of bankruptcy code, GST, introduction of single window system for building plan approvals and online ESIC (Employees’ State Insurance Corporation) and EPFO (Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation) registrations were not recognized by the World Bank this year.
The DIPP, he said, will appoint external agencies “to help departments carry forward reforms, hold stakeholders consultations, and monitor implementation of reforms”.
In the 2017 rankings released on Tuesday, the only major improvement for India was seen in the area of ‘getting electricity’. “On getting electricity, the report recognised the efforts of Tata Power in Delhi to make it faster and cheaper to obtain a connection. These efforts, combined with efforts in Mumbai last year, have allowed India to improve its rank on this indicator from 137 to 26…,” said a government statement. India was ranked 51st for ‘getting electricity’ in 2016. In the area of ‘enforcing contracts’, the country’s ranking improved from 178 in 2016 to 172 in 2017.
“Our objective is that in the next 3-4 years, India must come in the top 30 countries as far as ease of doing business is concerned,” Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog, had said in May, 2016.