Doing Business report: India ‘won’t be hit by data issues reported by World Bank’

Our Bureau | | Updated on: Dec 06, 2021

Man in business shirt playing with toy blocks on wood desk. There are compliance related words printed on the blocks

Data relate to rankings of 2018 and 2020; India not among the marked nations

India is unlikely to be affected by the irregularities reported in the data used by the World Bank to prepare the Ease of Doing Business ranking. Late on Thursday, the World Bank had disclosed issues with the data and announced pausing the publication of the ‘Doing Business’ report.

“The incidence of data irregularity relates to China, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Azerbaijan,” a source said while making it clear that India does not figure anywhere in it.

Out of 190 countries, India stood was ranked 63 in 2020 against 142 in 2014. It has been eyeing a slot in the top 50 with stepped up reforms.

“We are not worried about the World Bank’s reported decision on taking a relook at previous ‘Doing Business’ reports as India is not one of the marked countries,” said a senior official of the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).


Ranking may improve

“On the contrary, if you go by international media reports, the four countries that have been highlighted as the ones that might be affected are all ranked above India. So, if anything, India’s ranking might improve if the others rankings are lowered.”

“Since we have improved our governance and reforms, our ranking will improve automatically not just in the World Bank study but also in others such as the Global Competitive Index,” he emphasised.

“The reform process is not confined to Mumbai and Delhi (which were covered in the World Bank analysis). If we were bothered only about the World Bank ranking, we would have focussed only on Delhi and Maharashtra. However, we have made it a pan-India exercise. We do State-wise ranking on the same criteria as the World Bank,” the official further said.

Also read: Legal reforms needed for ease of business

World Bank reviewing data

The World Bank said a number of irregularities were reported regarding changes to the data in the Doing Business reports of 2018 and 2020, published in October 2017 and 2019, respectively.

Reiterating the integrity and impartiality of data and analysis as paramount, the World Bank said: “We have asked the Group’s independent internal audit function to perform an audit of the processes for data collection and review the last five ‘Doing Business’ reports and the controls to safeguard data integrity.” Based on the findings, it will retrospectively correct data of countries most affected by the irregularities.




Published on August 28, 2020
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