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Sunil Jain

Sunil Jain, Managing Editor of Financial Express, writes extensively on regulatory failure and uses data to expose policies such as those on reservations in education and employment. He has written two books using NCAER’s annual household surveys of income and expenditure and is a co-author of Caste in a Different Mould which examines the role of education, location and occupation in determining the difference in incomes across various caste groups.

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Articles By Sunil Jain

596 Articles

Funding a Punjab crop diversification plan critical

But onus of this lies on state government since it has to ensure this happens once Centre pays its share of costs

The current unease amongst farmers and intermediaries is on account of increased risk perception. The farm sector engages over 50% of the workforce and contributed 16.5% to GDP in FY20.

Punjab farm subsidy higher than annual income for farmers in rest of country!

In response to a question on whether the new laws should be amended to say private traders will have to pay at least the MSP for all crops – this is a demand the Congress party has been making – Rajan does say “if you h

This is about politics, not farmer rights

Punjab’s farmers are the most pampered in India, yet their productivity is falling; in any case, MSPs not being phased out

In 2017, the government announced its intention to double farmers’ income (DFI) by 2022.

Rational Expectations: Budgeting right, to regain investor trust

Privatisation central to raising inadequate govt-spend, make PLI work, drop retro-tax cases, focus on exports

U.S. stock market, Wall Street, CBOE volatility index, stock market performance, S&P 500, nasdaq,

Get competitive, don’t blame RCEP: Why India’s exports haven’t grown as fast as China’s or Vietnam’s

For all bilateral agreements that India has, such as with Japan, Korea, etc, this fell from 12.6% to 7.5%. Interestingly, the sharpest deterioration in India’s deficit is with China, a country with which it has no FTA.

Rational Expectations: Stirrings of reform, but just about that

The last few months have seen reforms restarting, but till these are followed up with a lot more, it won’t really move the needle

The fact that overall investment—measured as a share of GDP, as it should, FDI is also falling—continues to fall, from 31.9% of GDP in Q1FY15 when Modi came to power to 22.3% in Q1FY21 suggests investors remain mostly unconvinced.

PLI Scheme: Backing big firms and global champions is the way to go

Success of scheme depends on proxies chosen; the $200 criterion for phones ensures large exports for instance

This wooing of global-sized players, who can produce global-quality output and then export it as well, is what the new Rs 200,000-crore PLI scheme aims at.

Rational Expectations: How to win over Punjab’s farmers

Pay them to switch to new crops, indeed make it easier for farmers across the country to get better technology and access to markets

So, if the Centre wants to take its plans forward, it needs to find ways to shift farmers to different crops—in the case of Punjab and Haryana, this is critical for the water-table as well—and to more high-yielding ones.

Punjab’s rail-roko protest takes a predictable turn

Unfortunate that Punjab govt allowed protestors to block trains; it needs to clear tracks to ensure trains run again

As with Punjab, Rajasthan farm Bills just about politics

Not allowing below-MSP sales would put a huge financial burden on Rajasthan, so its new Bill steers clear of this

Rational Expectations: Sacrificing BSNL at Atmanirbharta altar

From cancelling its tender to asking it to use an untried vendor-model & now to phase out its 2G services, govt doing its best to shut BSNL

After the continuing hostilities with China, the government decided that Chinese firms would not be allowed to participate in BSNL’s 4G tender even though they are among the most competitive globally.

Rational Expectations: Its popularity could be Google’s defence

If its search engine is superior, Google could well argue that firms like Apple use it precisely because users want it

Google’s move is to be lauded, but as long as beauty filters continue to be available on the Android Playstore as also other app stores, it likely won’t mean much.

Rational Expectations: GDP growth will fix debt, so spend now

But even if the deficit increases by 7% of GDP this year while trend nominal GDP settles at 10%, debt/GDP stabilises around 90% and then begins to come down; trend growth matters critically for debt sustainability.

And assuming a 25% investment rate—it is lower right now—this means India’s potential growth falls by 1.5% or so.

Why breaking up the Big Tech a bad idea

The US House report conflates abuse of social media with monopoly issues, ignores consumer welfare & tech progress

The second half of this year could be as good as it was last year: RC Bhargava, chairman, Maruti Suzuki

If you look at what happens in the states, the time it takes to get approvals and clearances before you can run the operations, a lot of it still costs money.

I don’t have the exact numbers, but what is apparent is the sales of compact and entry-level cars have grown faster than the overall sales.

Still too many roadblocks in India: RC Bhargava, Chairman, Maruti Suzuki

The government realises that if you want sustainable high demand, which is required to grow manufacturing and employment, we need to make cars affordable.

Our norm is that dealers need to have one month’s stock; else, if there aren’t enough cars in the showroom, the buyer will go elsewhere.

Labour law reforms: Enough to attract China-refugees?

Attractive tax rates and fixed-term contracts good for firms that wish to relocate; but a lot of red-tape remains, as does bad policy

Along with the sharp cuts in corporate tax rates, India suddenly looks a lot more attractive for those looking to relocate from China; indeed, Apple and several others in the mobile-manufacturing space are getting even more benefits.

Vodafone shows up India in a big way

From unfair tax administration to challenging even arbitration awards, India is a tough place to do business

"As our integration nears completion, we have already expanded our 4G coverage to 1 billion Indian population who can now avail faster data services pan-India," he added.

Few farmers really worry about MSP

Just 5-6% of the value of agricultural output is sold at MSP, and this is mainly restricted to a few north Indian states

With nearly Rs 5,000 crore at stake every year, apart from an assured market for its farmers, not surprisingly, Punjab is at the forefront of the agitation.

Won’t pay my bills, even if court orders

As the Vedanta case shows, government refusing to accept arbitration orders is the new challenge for DoingBusiness

Overdues: Is supplying to govt or PSUs a big risk?

The finance ministry says dues are getting cleared, but what is needed is a mechanism that doesn’t need FM’s intervention

The bigger problem here is that, with the exception of Praapti that puts out information regularly, there is really no way to get authentic information on the dues.

Is it the bureaucrat, or is it the system?

The A Raja licences that hit investor faith in the country were also a failure of the political system, not a bureaucratic one. The telecom fiasco, including the AGR one, as this newspaper has so diligently documented over th

IBC left alone, Supreme Court seals Vodafone Idea fate

Spectrum can now be sold as part of IBC process, SC makes VodaIdea survival tougher by going against Cabinet order

Crushing season: If govt paid-up, farmer dues owed by sugar mills could halve

In the case of a state like Uttar Pradesh where around Rs 11,300 crore is owed to farmers, the dues to some of the better mills are close to 75% of what the mills owe the farmers.

This means mills earn around Rs 356.8 from every quintal of sugarcane they purchase; based on the Rangarajan formula, mills were to pay farmers 75% of what they earned, or Rs 267.6.

Modi needs an Operation Twist

Govt needs to spend Rs 10-12 lakh crore & finance this with a bond that is redeemed by timely sale of PSU shares

For several decades, Icrier professor Ashok Gulati has been talking of how an active futures strategy is a better alternative to carrying millions of tonnes of extra stock with FCI; the use of Aadhaar-based payments can help save Rs 30,000 crore every year in terms of food subsidies.

Rational Expectations: DoT inaction, govt greed is the issue

It never fixed AGR issue, didn’t clarify on spectrum-resale & has huge dues thanks to the policy of jacking up spectrum prices.

Health Record: Telemedicine’s UPI moment, but concerted govt push will be critical

Just as UPI revolutionised payments, the health record the PM will announce can change healthcare forever.

UPI transaction, unified payment interface, google pay, phone pe, BHIM
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