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Easy Business, Uneasy Economy!

India has risen 14 places in the latest Ease of Doing Business Global Rankings in 2019. The World Bank’s ‘Doing Business 2020’ report, released on 24th Oct 2019, ranked India at 63rd position against 77th last year. For an economy that has been starved of good news for a while, the improvement in India’s ranking and the score should bring some cheer.

Key reasons that it escalated quickly:  

  • Successful implementation of the IBC: The recovery rate in case of insolvency has improved to 71.6% from 26.5% last year.

  • Easier trade across borders: India has enabled post-clearance audits, integrated trade stakeholders in a single electronic platform, upgraded port infrastructures, and enhanced electronic submission of documents.

  • Dealing with Construction Permits: India has streamlined the process, reduced the time & cost of obtaining construction permits and, improved building quality control mechanisms.  

  • 'Make in India' Campaign: The campaign focused on attracting foreign investment, boosting the private sector and enhancing the country's overall competitiveness.

  • With a slew of several other measures taken by the government, India’s position in the ease of doing business next year is expected to improve further.

But, didn’t you read the T&C?

The World Bank’s rankings are a summation of survey results from two main business centers, Mumbai and Delhi, and are merely indicative from a global, big-picture point of view. When it comes to genuinely addressing the pain points that its entrepreneurs undergo in their quest to set up and scale business across the nation, India still has miles to go.

Creditable progress, but hard miles ahead!

The improved rank must not influence our thinking that rankings created by external experts fully depict our country’s priorities and objectives. The only ranking or incidental indicators must not seize our hearts with pride, even if they are valuable in maintaining pressure on the larger ecosystem in keeping the economic environment conducive.

Ranking per se, Government’s objective should be to bring real changes on the ground level by focusing on ease of doing business for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises whose pain is not completely captured in the ranking even though they contribute significantly to the economy.  

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