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India’s Ease Of Doing Business Rank ‘Worrying’: IT Industry Body Nasscom

Bengaluru: IT industry body Nasscom on Wednesday said India’s low position in the ease of doing business ranking is “worrying”.

Replying to a question by reporters on India’s 130th position in terms of ease of doing business, Nasscom president R Chandrashekhar said, “I think that should be hugely worrying.”

But he said that the country has the third-largest base of start-ups, which is encouraging.

“The good thing is that we are tracking up with a country like UK which is second and we are third (in startup base),” he added.

He also said that the thing to “really worry about is that countries like China and Israel are much faster than us, both in terms of scale of their operations, size and the number of companies which are coming up”.

“I think we really need to step on it as a country, and that includes both the government and the industry, it includes the entire ecosystem, whether it is incubator or accelerator, even the academic institutions…” he added.

In the World Bank’s latest ‘Doing Business’ 2017 report, India’s place remained unchanged from last year’s ranking of 130 among 190 economies that were assessed on various parameters.

However, last year’s ranking has been revised to 131, translating into a gain of one spot for India this year. Mr Chandrashekhar said discussions are on with the government on improving the ease of doing business, especially for start-ups.

“…the most important is also to accelerate and enhance the whole culture of entrepreneurship which is today not very strong in the academic institutions. We have to spread that wider,” he said.

Noting that these were areas where the government and the industry need to work together, he said, “We don’t have too much time, we have to do it now.”

According to the ‘Indian Startup Ecosystem Maturing – 2016’ report by Nasscom-ZINNOV released on Wednesday, India has emerged as the third largest start-up base, just behind the US and the UK.

Nearly 1,400 new start-ups are expected by the end of 2016, up by 8-10 per cent from last year.

India is closely followed by Israel and China at fourth and fifth spots, respectively.

“…threat factors are very clearly identified, the competition from countries like Israel and China is quite strong,” Mr Chandrashekhar said.

He said that while India grew by only 10-12 per cent in terms of number of start-ups, Israel had been growing at 14 per cent and China at 25 per cent.

“So that is something we will have to worry about, we have to see what we can do, because ultimately the whole ecosystem of funders, angels and all of that will gravitate to where the action is,” he said, adding, “We need to significantly step up the level of activity.”