Andhra Pradesh and Telengana have jointly topped the 2016 all-India ranking of State/Union Territory-wise Ease of Doing Business, while last-year’s topper Gujarat slipped to the third spot. The rankings, announced on Monday by Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, are on the basis of a 340-point business reform action plan and their implementation by the States. This covers the period from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016.
Meanwhile, the World Bank said what was interesting this year was that four of the seven states with the lowest income levels in India have found a place in the top ten ranks, while all the seven such states had an implementation rate of over 75 per cent.
These low-income states included Chhattisgarh (97.32 per cent implementation rate regarding the 340 reform measures, and fourth rank), Madhya Pradesh (97.01 per cent and fifth), Jharkhand (96.57 per cent and seventh), Rajasthan (96.43 per cent and eighth), Odisha (92.73 and 11th), Uttar Pradesh (84.52 per cent and 14th), Bihar (75.82 per cent and 16th rank).
The Bank, along with the Centre’s Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) was involved in the process of reviewing the evidence submitted by states/UTs regarding implementation of reforms for the rankings.
The World Bank said it was looking into India’s suggestion that the World Bank Group’s global Doing Business rankings need to consider reforms undertaken across the country and not just in Mumbai and Delhi as is being done currently.
India’s rank in the recently released global Doing Business India ranking was a lowly 130th, just one rank up from the previous year’s ‘revised’ ranking of 131st. Prime Minister Modi is keen to ensure that India finds a place in the top 50 countries within a year or two.
The World Bank is learning that one size does not fit big and diverse countries like India, said the World Bank’s new Country Director for India, Junaid Ahmad, speaking on the occasion. Ahmad said other large nations like Brazil and Russia have also moved from a focus at the Central level to a sub-national level, like India. Brazil and Russia have requested more exchanges with India to learn about the best practices, he added.