From next year, WB to survey Bengaluru for biz rankings

Even after making the highest improvement in the WB’s ease of doing business index in the last three years compared to any large country since 2011, India is still behind on parameters such as availability of credit businesses and electricity to households.

From next year, Bengaluru and Kolkata will also be added to the list of cities surveyed by the World Bank for determining India’s position in its ease of doing business ranking.

India took a huge stride in improving its ease of doing business, climbing 14 notches to clinch 63rd place in the list of 190 countries, according to the World Bank’s Doing Business Report, (DBR) 2020. But the indicators were taken only from Delhi and Mumbai to determine the ranking for entire India.

The country also remained among the world’s top 10 improvers for the third consecutive year. China too made it to the list.

“Till now, two cities are being covered for ease of doing business rankings. This does not adequately represent the country’s ranking, the World Bank has agreed to survey Bengaluru and Kolkata from next year,” Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told reporters Thursday, hours after the WB report on Doing Business Ranking, 2020 was released.

Though India has made a significant jump in ease of doing business ranking from 142 in 2014 to 63 in 2019, its ranking has stacked up criticism for being based on an extremely narrow survey done by the World Bank.

Earlier this year, former Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan had warned the government not to focus much on the WB ranking as it took too few indicators and only from Delhi and Mumbai to determine India’s ranking.

“Instead of focusing on World Bank indicators of “Doing Business”, which are primarily based on a few selected indicators in Delhi and Mumbai, we must lighten the actual compliance burden for business, while ensuring development is sustainable," Rajan had said a little before parliamentary elections this year, cautioning the next government to refrain from governing the country from the Prime Minister’s Office.

Even after making the highest improvement in the WB’s ease of doing business index in the last three years compared to any large country since 2011, India is still behind on parameters such as availability of credit businesses and electricity to households.

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