India continues to register enormous success in improving its ranking on the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ index. In the latest report, for the second straight year, India jumped 23 places to the 77th position on the back of reforms focused on taxation, bankruptcy, and other areas.
Last year, India was ranked 100th in the World Bank’s Doing Business report.
The ranking is being seen as a shot in the arm for the Central government which faces strong criticism from opposition parties ahead of the general elections due early next year.
The World Bank, in its ‘Doing Business’ 2019 report, said India improved its rank on six out of the 10 parameters related to starting and doing business in the country. These parameters, including the ease of starting a business, are construction permits, getting electricity, getting credit, paying taxes, trade across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.
In 2014, the year when Modi came in power, India was ranked at the 142nd position among 190 nations. Southwest Pacific Ocean nation, New Zealand tops the list of 190 countries in ease of doing business, followed by Singapore (2), Denmark (3), and Hong Kong (4). The United States is placed eight and China have been ranked 46th. Neighbouring Pakistan is placed at 136.
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World Bank, putting India among the top 10 economies to make the most improvements, said India made starting a business easier by integrating multiple application forms into a general incorporation form. “India also replaced the value-added tax with the GST (Goods and Services Tax) for which the registration process is faster,” added the World Bank.
The World Bank said “India made paying taxes easier by replacing many indirect taxes with a single indirect tax, the GST, for the entire country. India also made paying taxes less costly by reducing the corporate income tax rate and the employees’ provident funds scheme rate paid by the employer”.
Further, India reduced the time and cost of export and import through various initiatives, including the implementation of electronic sealing of containers, the upgrading of port infrastructure and allowing electronic submission of supporting documents with digital signatures, it said.
Commerce and Industry Ministry, in a statement, said: “India’s leap of 23 ranks in the ease of doing business is significant considering that last year India has improved its ranking by 30 places, a rare feat for any large country of the size of India.”
The country, the ministry added, has improved its ranking by 53 positions in the last two years and 65 positions in four years since 2014.