Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Telangana have been adjudged the top achievers in the Business Reform Action Plan (BRAP) 2020 report released by the Centre on Thursday. The report ranked States and Union Territories on the basis of ease-of-doing-business parameters.

The seven top-ranked States scored more than 90 per cent in a feedback-based assessment by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), covering 301 reform action points. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman released the report at an event attended by Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal, DPIIT Secretary Anurag Jain, and other government officials and industry representatives.

Learning culture

The assessment has evolved from evidence-based to 100 per cent feedback in multilingual format, Goyal said. “The purpose of this BRAP exercise is to infuse a culture of learning from each other’s best practices and improve upon the business climate in each State/UT with a unified objective for India to emerge as the most favoured investment destination across the globe,” he added.

The States that scored between 80 per cent and 90 per cent to be ranked as achievers included Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh. Assam, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Jharkhand, Kerala, Rajasthan and West Bengal scored between 50 per cent and 80 per cent and ranked as emerging business ecosystems.

Delhi, Bihar, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Chandigarh, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Daman & Diu, Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Puducherry, Tripura and all the other UTs scored less than 50 per cent and were marked as emerging business ecosystems. Feedback could not be obtained for Sikkim, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Lakshadweep and Ladakh due to insufficient user data.

Reform points

Significantly, in the latest assessment, the government has replaced a simple ranking of individual States with a system of ranking a band of States that are in the same range of reform completion. The reform points cover 15 business regulatory areas such as access to information, single window system, labour, environment and sectoral reforms.

Sectoral reforms have been introduced in the ranking for the first time, with 72 reforms identified across nine sectors, including trade license, healthcare, legal metrology, cinema halls, hospitality, fire NOC (no-objection certificate), telecom, movie shooting and tourism.

DPIIT has released five editions of BRAP since 2014. In BRAP 2019, released in September 2020, Andhra Pradesh topped the charts, followed by Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand. Tripura, Sikkim and Odisha were the laggards.