India jumps 12 places in ease of biz

India has jumped 12 places in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business index on the back of reforms undertaken by the government to improve the investment climate.The country ranks 130 out of 189 economies in the world in this year’s (2016) report (ranked 142 in Doing Business 2015), marking a significant shift in the trend after several years of decline in ranking. Under the new methodology , its rank has moved to 130 from 134 in the previous year.29_10_2015_025_020_010

The Doing Business 2016: Measuring Regulatory Quality and Efficiency , released on Tuesday , captures reforms implemented in 189 countries between June 2, 2014 and June 1, 2015.

In the global ranking stakes, Singapore retains its top spot. Joining it on the list of the top 10 economies with the most business-friendly regulatory environments are New Zealand, in second place; Denmark (3rd), Republic of Korea, Hong Kong SAR, China, UK, US, Sweden, Norway , and Finland.

The report comes as a shot in the arm for the government battling to revive growth, attract investment and remove the regulatory and bureaucratic hurdles to business.

The report highlights two reforms that India has imple mented during the past year. It was able to amend the Companies Act in just under six months and made starting a business easier by eliminating the minimum capital requirement and the need to obtain a certificate to commence business operations, saving entrepreneurs an unnecessary procedure and five days’ wait time, the World Bank said.

In both Delhi and Mumbai, the process for getting an elec tricity connection was made simpler and faster.

“This year’s improvement in ranking marks a significant shift in trend after several years of decline. With sustained reforms, India can make signi ficant improvements in its rankings in the next few years,“ said Onno Ruhl, World Bank country director in India.

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“Countries such as Russia and Rwanda, who have witnessed dramatic improvements in their ranking in the past three to five years, started with more modest changes in initial years. Russia, which improved its rank from 123 in DB 2011to 51 in DB 2016, had moved just three places in the first year.“

The report also highlights a number of reforms already underway in India, which were not fully felt by the majority of businesses by June 1, 2015 but will help India further improve its rank in the coming years. In particular, it notes India’s efforts to streamline the process of obtaining a construction permit in Mumbai, and new systems for e-filing and e-payment of taxes.

Ongoing efforts to introduce and enact the bankruptcy Code, movement on operationalizing commercial benches and courts in Delhi and Mumbai, efforts to introduce automation in judicial processes in courts, further digitization of land records, and integration of registration and mutation processes, and introduction and launch of National Single Window for trade may also help India improve its rank in future.




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