Skip to main content

Gujarat No 1 in ease of doing business? Thank environmental compliance: Centre-sponsored World Bank report

World Bank-supported chart
By Our Representative
A Government of India report, supported by World Bank, consultants KPMG, and two top industry bodies, Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), has placed Gujarat No 1 for “ease of doing business”, but point out, this has been possible because of cent per cent compliance to environmental laws, an area in which it is most suspected by environmentalists.
The report’s revelation comes amidst sharp criticism by top environmental experts of the Gujarat government’s “complete failure” to ensure that industries comply with environmental norms. Only two years ago, the Central Pollution Control Board had found two of the industrial centres in Gujarat, Vapi and Ankaleshwar, as topping the list of most polluting clusters.
Setting aside these concerns, the report, interestingly, is more points to how quickly environment procedures are followed in Gujarat. It says Gujarat is the only state which has implemented the online “consent management system”, achieving 100 per cent score on this score. The compliance in Gujarat, it adds, is very high for handling air, water and hazardous waste pollution.
The report, in fact, praises the Gujarat Pollution Control Board for adopting “a web based application called eXtended Green Node (XGN) to provide an IT solution for effective implementation of various pollution control board clearances/procedures”.
It says, “XGN provides hassle free, 24 X 7 anywhere e-access to businesses to apply online, track application approvals, file returns and statements and getting online permissions under various Acts and rules. obtain the online permissions from GPCB.”
The other two parameters for which Gujarat has been found to be particularly doing well are land allocation and implementation of labour laws. Titled “Assessment of State Implementation of Business Reforms”, the report is the outcome of Prime Minister Narendra Modi asking the World Bank Group to “support” India’s efforts to enhance India’s competitiveness and increase manufactured exports.
A World Bank source says, the report “captures the findings of an assessment of reform implementation by states led by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India”.
It comes close on the heels of World Bank ranking Gujarat 142 among 189 countries in its assessment of ease of doing business. The ranking has gone down by two in a year; it was 140 in 2014. Onno Ruhl, World Bank country director, who released the report, says, “The stark reality is that India remains a difficult place to do business. A disproportionately high regulatory burden is borne by businesses in India today.”
Despite ranking No 1, the report does not believe that Gujarat is a leader. It says, “States with an overall implementation status of 75 per cent and above” would be leaders, but at 71.14 per cent Gujarat is still a little away.
Gujarat is still an “aspiring leader”, the report states, pointing out that it in the company of six other states – Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha and Rajasthan.
Notwithstanding Gujarat being No 1 in ease of doing business, as for “setting up business”, the report finds several states topping the list, but not Gujarat. Setting up business criteria include establishing an effective single window system, availability of information on regulatory compliance requirements, and similar such procedures.
The report comments, “Remarkably, Punjab is the only state in which the single window system allows application for all of the licenses studied in this assessment, although some others come very close. The box below examines how Punjab has achieved this.”
Other states which have “converted” their single window system into truly effective online portals” are Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh, the report points out.

Comments

TRENDING

Modi, Shah 'forget': Gandhi’s first Satyagraha was against citizenship law of South Africa

By Nachiketa Desai*
Hindu fanatic Nathuram Godse assassinated Mahatma Gandhi once on January 30, 1948 but his followers raising the war cry of ‘Jai Sriram’ are killing the Mahatma every day. In his home state of Gujarat, Gandhiji was killed a thousand times in 2002 when over 2,000 Muslims were butchered, their women raped, homes and shops plundered and set on fire and even unborn babies ripped out of the wombs of their mothers.

Union Budget 'moves away' from Right to Education, 1.3 lakh schools closed down

By Dr Aparajita Sharma*
It was a shocking reply by the Union human resource development minister to a question raised in Parliament on closure of schools in a country where lakhs of children are still out of school. On December 2, the minister, Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, told Lok Sabha that the NITI Aayog’s education project, Sath-E, has led to 35,996 schools of different levels being merged in Madhya Pradesh, 4,312 in Jharkhand and 1,803 in Odisha. NITI Aayog is the Central Government’s policy think-tank.

CAA-NPR-NRC will 'target' 99% homeless, who are without birth certificates: NCU

Counterview Desk
Claiming to base on a survey in five states (Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu), which finds that over 99% of the homeless people do not have birth certificates, a civil rights organization which networks activists, researchers, urban practioners, lawyers, informal sector workers, has claimed that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), as also the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the National Population Register (NPR), are likely to adversely impact this section the most.

Modi 'warned': Will not remain silent when women are labelled terrorists and traitors

Counterview Desk
As many as 13 women's rights organizations and 162 individuals have issued an open letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi stating that in the light of hate speeches during Delhi elections, especially directed against women, it is his "Constitutional duty to protect all citizens" and tell his partymen "to fight the elections in a manner that upholds the Constitution, not one that increases the fear and insecurity among women."

Law 'governing' world's tallest Statue of Unity refers to local tribals as occupiers

By Rohit Prajapati, Krishnakant*
The recently enacted Statue of Unity (SoU) Area Development and Tourism Governance Act, 2019 in Gujarat comes amidst a terrifying atmosphere of intimidation, house arrests, detentions and FIRs, not to mention the overarching implementation of Section 144 across the state.

Anti-CAA: Mallika Sarabhai joins students, faculty to protest dy CM's 'divisive' talk

By Our Representative
Taking strong exception to deputy chief minister Nitin Patel’s statement against those protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC), well-known danseuse Mallika Sarabhai has joined tens of activists and students and faculty of Gujarat University, CEPT University, Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad, Gujarat Vidyapeeth and Nirma University to say that they are seeking “azadi” from the fascist and communal forces of the country.

Ramchandra Guha on how Gandhi outgrew his Gujarati bania 'parochialism'

By Rajiv Shah
More than a fortnight ago, prominent historian Ramchandra Guha, who calls himself Gandhi scholar and not a Gandhian, came to Ahmedabad. While I was part of a small group of persons who met him at lunch, his lecture on Gandhi in the evening, where he sought to interpret what swaraj meant to Gandhi, surely, interested the selected audience that had been called to listen to him.

Mystery around Gujarat PSU 'transfer' of Rs 250 crore to Canadian firm Karnalyte

By AK Luke, IAS (Retd)*
While returning from a Board meeting of the Oil India Limited (OIL) in Ahmedabad some time in 2012, two officers of the Gujarat State Fertilizers and Chemicals Ltd (GSFC), Nanavaty and Patel,  saw me off at the airport. They said they were proceeding to Canada in connection with a project GSFC had entered into with a company there. As we were running late, I hastily wished them the best.

Ironical? Hindutva is all 'fire and spite', as Muslim women become apostles of peace

By Sandeep Pandey*
On January 26, Republic Day, 2020, while protests simmered against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC) throughout India, a dozen North American cities also witnessed historic protests. Indian Embassies have been witness to protests in the past. But this time it was different.