The industry body CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) has identified high logistics cost as a hindrance in Ease of Doing Business (EODB) which impacts the economy and India’s mission towards a self-reliant nation.
CII believes that more outcome-oriented action on Ease of Doing Business is the route to India’s mission of self-reliance.
“While many policies have been announced for a facilitative investment climate, effective translation into ground-level outcomes will help investor perceptions and further boost confidence. We believe that taking the ease of doing business route can unlock huge potential at a time when the world is seeking new investment opportunities.”~ Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII
The Central and state governments have introduced a series of reforms across various areas and contributed to India’s leap of 79 positions from 142nd rank to 63rd rank in the latest report of the World Bank.
Speaking on the measures for EODB, CII says, “India’s high logistics costs impact its competitiveness. This will require medium-term action such as increasing the share of railways and waterways in transport, improving first-mile and last-mile connectivity and reducing port dwell time. Cross subsidization of freight should be rationalised.”
CII states that sustaining this reform momentum can drive new investments including from overseas.
Apart from logistics cost, CII identified 7 areas where strong measures in mission mode can strengthen EODB, reduce cost and time for making Indian industry competitive.
CII suggests that the effective implementation of online Single Window system should be done to strengthen EODB. Regular monitoring by the Chief Secretary of a state, time-bound approvals and single interface should be implemented in all states.
It believes that to seek more overseas engagement, a quick and low-cost trade facilitation mechanism should exist. And, thus suggests that compliances for labour regulations could be speeded up at lower costs. States can follow the example of Uttar Pradesh by exempting industry from select labour laws for 3 years.
CII also brings in light the challenges faced in enforcing contracts due to insufficient commercial courts and infrastructure. It suggests major digital reforms such as virtual court proceedings, e-filing, and work from home to speed up court deliberations.
Synchronized joint inspections, computerized risk-based inspections, and differentiated inspection requirements for low-risk industries can reduce the inspection burden on companies, noted CII.
Speaking on MSMEs, it said the sector needs a special helping hand and should be exempted from approvals and inspections for 3 years under state laws while following all rules. Self-certification route can be used for renewal and approvals for MSME with a good track record.