A Commerce and Industry Ministry statement in New Delhi said: "India's leap of 23 ranks in the ease of doing business ranking is significant considering that past year India has improved its ranking by 30 places, a rare feat for any large country of the size of India". In three years, we have improved our ranking by 65 positions - a claim that few countries of India's size and complexity can claim. She also highlighted that improvement was a result of combined effort under the Prime Minister s Steering Committee on Doing Business Reforms.
The multilateral lender also said that permits needed by a business to start operations in New Delhi dropped to 11 from 20 while those in Mumbai need 10 permits as against 12 a year ago.
It added, "India implemented several initiatives that improved the efficiency of cross-border trade, reducing border and documentary compliance time for both exports and imports".
"We have made progress in leaps and bounds, probably the most significant in the history of Ease of Doing Business", Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, underscoring that to make significant progress, one has to "literally crack the code" and work on the bottlenecks. In 2016, 2015 and 2014, India had not improved much and was placed at 130, 131 and 134, respectively, in the ranking. India is the only South Asian country to achieve this distinction two years in a row, and only nine other countries have accomplished this since 2011.
Board of Investment, being the secretariat of Prime Minister s Steering Committee on Doing Business Reforms, briefed the press on the reforms behind improvements made in Pakistan s ranking and reforms being introduced to improve it further.
Shanta Devarajan, the World Bank's senior director for development economics and acting chief economist, said: "The diversity among the top improvers shows that economies of all sizes and income levels, and even those in conflict can advance the business climate for domestic small and medium enterprises".
India is the only other country, alongside Djibouti, to be in top ten for second year in a row.
This is the second consecutive year that India has been recognised as a top improver.
India, it said, made starting a business easier by integrating multiple application forms into a general incorporation form. India made Paying Taxes easier by merging diverse sales taxes into a single General Sales Tax (GST).
He said, it is all because of teamwork of Central government, State governments and Local government. So while today we celebrate our achievements, from tomorrow we must embark dedicatedly to reform, perform and transform the way we deal with business disputes and land management in India.
In New Delhi, Jaitley said a focussed approach would ensure getting within "the 50th rank target is not out of reach".