Ease of doing business: India, Pakistan, China in World Bank’s new list of 20 most improved economies

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Updated: Sep 29, 2019 12:46 PM

India’s jump in the ease of doing business index so far due to the pro-business reforms has put the country among top 20 ‘improvers’ according to a list by the World Bank on top 20 economies that have improved the most on ease of doing business core.

The World Bank picked the 20 best-improving economies based on ease of doing business in three or more of the 10 areas included in this year’s aggregate ease of doing business score.

India’s jump in the ease of doing business index so far due to the pro-business reforms implemented by the Narendra Modi government has put the country among top 20 ‘improvers’ according to a list by the World Bank on top 20 economies that have improved the most on ease of doing business core. The World Bank recognized the measures taken for making it easier to do business in India in areas including obtaining construction permits through single-window system in Delhi and Mumbai; reducing cost to start a business by abolishing filing fees for the SPICe company incorporation form, electronic memorandum of association and articles of association; and integrating multiple government agencies online and upgrading port equipment and infrastructure that made exporting and importing easier.

“India’s achievements this year build on a sustained multi-year reform effort. Since 2003/04, India has implemented 48 reforms captured by Doing Business. The most improved business regulatory areas have been starting a business, dealing with construction permits and resolving insolvency,” the World Bank said in the list. However, the final list (annual ranking) by the World Bank for the best performing economies will be released on October 24 this year.

The World Bank picked the 20 best-improving economies based on ease of doing business in three or more of the 10 areas included in this year’s aggregate ease of doing business score and an increase in their ease of doing business score because of the previous year reforms.

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India jumped 23 positions to 77 in 2018 from its rank of 100 in 2017 among 190 countries. The country had improved by 30 positions from 130 in 2016. It improved its rank in 6 out of 10 indicators with the biggest change in the ‘Construction Permits’ and ‘Trading across Borders’ from 181 in 2017 to 52 in 2018 and 146 in 2017 to 80 in 2018 respectively.

The other countries that made it to the list of top 20 improvers (in no particular order) included Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, Djibouti, Jordan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, The Kyrgyz Republic, Myanmar, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Togo, Uzbekistan, Zimbabwe, and Pakistan. The improvement in Pakistan was recorded in six areas including starting a business, construction permits, electricity, property registration, paying taxes and trading across borders. Pakistan was ranked at 147 in ease of doing business rank in 2017 and 136 in 2018.

China, on the other hand, had implemented reforms in eight areas such as obtaining the company seal, construction permit, online application for electricity connections, implementing a preferential corporate income tax rate for small enterprises, easier exporting and importing etc. The country improved its ranking to 46 last year, up from 76 in 2017.

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