Target is top 50 in ease of doing business ranking: Modi

Target is top 50 in ease of doing business ranking: Modi

Modi said India is not content with entering the 100 ranks in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business index.

"The upward movement from 142 to 100 rank in three years is a result of our initiatives to simplify procedures. This process is ongoing. The aim is to reach top 50," Modi said in his inaugural address.

Outlining various measures taken by his government to improve the investment climate, including the scrapping of over 1,200 redundant laws, easing the norms in 21 sectors to attract FDI and making clearances online, the prime minister called upon global entrepreneurs to make investments in India and become partners in India's growth story.

Referring to India's impressive show, the prime minister said that a wide range of multi-sectoral reforms, particularly in the areas of taxation, licensing, bankruptcy laws and protection of small investors, resulted in the surge in rankings.

Modi said his government would continue with reforms to make systems more transparent and responsive. He also referred to the credit rating company Moody's recent decision to upgrade India's sovereign rating and said it had come after a gap of 14 years.

Stating that women had been the major beneficiaries of his government's initiatives like direct benefit transfer scheme and Jan Dhan Yojana, the prime minister made a strong pitch for utilising business potential that smartphones offer.

"Smartphones are expected to reach 500 million by 2018. This offers an immense potential for growth for any venture in terms of outreach and for job creation," he said.

"We believe women empowerment is vital to our development. Our history has references to women of enormous talent in various walks of life," Modi said.

The "Startup India" programme, he said, was a comprehensive plan to foster entrepreneurship and innovation.

"It aims to minimise regulatory burden and support startups," the prime minister said.

Later, the prime minister hosted a dinner for Ivanka, daughter and advisor to US President Donald Trump, and other delegates at the Taj Falaknuma Palace.

Over 1,500 delegates from 150 countries, half of them women entrepreneurs and investors, are participating in the summit being held in South Asia for the first time.

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