After pinning its hopes on a significant improvement in the World Bank’s ease of doing business index, India has managed to move up by only a single rank in the latest Doing Business Report 2017 by the bank.
The country remains at the 130th position globally, it was revealed on Tuesday. This is the same as last year, but qualifies for a single upward movement in rank as India’s position in 2016 has been revised to 131 by the World Bank.
The rankings come after senior government officials had repeatedly said India will improve drastically in the 2017 report and puts into jeopardy Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s aim of pushing India among the top 50 nations within the next few years.
The latest ranking by the World Bank does not recognize several reform measures taken by the government to implement ease of doing business in the country and we will engage with them on these issues, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Ramesh Abhishek said.
The report takes into account reforms implemented upto 1st June and several measures by the government came into effect after that, he added.
The World Bank ranks countries on 10 parameters: starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting minority shareholders, paying taxes, enforcing contracts, trading across borders and resolving insolvency.
Among these, India’s position deteriorated on all parameters apart from getting electricity, enforcing contracts and registering property. The country continued to improve the most in getting electricity connection, with its ranking soaring from 51st last year to 26th in the latest report. However, the two other parameter recording positive movement, that of enforcing contracts and registering property still places India 172nd and 138th, respectively, among all nations.
India ranking also continued to weaken in areas of strength like protecting minority investors — went down to 13th position from 10th position in the previous year — and getting credit — 44th position from 42nd position in the previous year.
New Zealand bagged the top spot in the rankings followed by Singapore, Denmark, Hong Kongand Korea.
While neighboring China’s ranking improved 6th positions from 84th to 78th, Pakistan fell an equal number of positions to reach 144th position from 138th earlier.
For India, the ranking covers data from Delhi and Mumbai, with weights of 53 per cent and 47 per cent, respectively. The World Bank sources feedback from users of government services, who had not been aware of various reforms being implemented, Abhishek said. The DIPP will engage much more with users and make changes to the feedback system, he added.
Important reforms by the government not considered by the World Bank include enactment of the insolvency and bankruptcy code and introduction of the online single window system for building approvals in both Delhi and Mumbai. India’s position on construction permit approval remains dismal, having fallen from to 185 from 183 previous year.
In terms of starting a business, India’s ranking went down to 155th position from 151st last year. This was also true for registering a property and resolving insolvency. On this count, the country’s position slid one position from last year to 136th.