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HindustanTimes Sat,25 Oct 2014

Way to go: World Bank chief bats for Gujarat model all across India

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, July 23, 2014
First Published: 23:46 IST(23/7/2014) | Last Updated: 23:49 IST(23/7/2014)

India will be a far easier place to do business if the country adopted the practices and processes that Gujarat follows, World Bank said on Wednesday, in what could be seen a thumbs up for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s much-touted Gujarat model of governance.

World Bank group president Jim Yong Kim, who is on a three-day visit to India, said that India can leap-frog at least 50 notches from its current 134th position in the bank’s Ease of Doing Buisness survey if all states followed the Gujarat model.

“We have looked at this (the ease of doing business)…if India was to be ranked based just on the Gujarat model, it would improve 50 places… we now hope that it would scale up,” Kim said.

Gujarat is among India’s hottest business destinations that has earned praise from business leaders for easy norms, transparent procedures and rapid approvals.

In India, government approvals and cumbersome administrative processes often delay start of business and push up costs.

For instance, Indian businesses have to pay a total number of 33 taxes on an average compared to seven in China.

“From my discussions with Prime Minister Modi and minister Jaitley, it is clear that they are committed to increasing India’s economic growth…I was exteremely impressed with his (Modi’s) sense of urgency ..his intention is to grow the economy quickly,” Kim said after his meeting with Modi which lasted for 50 minutes.

Kim’s visit to India comes shortly after the five Brics nations — Brazil, Russia, India China and South Africa — have decided to create a new development bank in what analysts see as a direct challenge to the World Bank for aids and financing.

World Bank group’s aid to India will go up to $18 billion in the next three years, he added.

India is the highest cumulative borrower of the World Bank, with a current portfolio of 85 projects with a total commitment of $24.12 billion from both International Bank for Reconstruction and Development accounting for $12.86 billion and International Development Association, which is the soft loan window accounting for $11.16 billion in active projects.


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