oppn parties India Should be in Top 10 in Global Competitiveness Index

News Snippets

  • Flipkart assures employees that there will be no job or salary cuts due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Although it was obvious, but the government still clarifies that there is no need to switch off appliances and only lights need to be switched off on April 5 at 9pm after confusion in the minds of some people
  • PM Modi and President Trump decide "to deploy full strength of (Indo-US) partnership" to fight against COVID-19
  • 17 states have reported 1023 cases of coronavirus linked to the Tablighi Jamaat, which translates to 30% of all positive cases in India
  • The government says people should not use alcohol-based hand sanitizers before lighting diyas or candles on April 5
  • The railways say there is no certainty yet when services will resume after the lockdown and a final decision will be taken in the next few days
  • As coronavirus cases multiply in Assam, six north-east states seal their borders with the state
  • Power System Operation Corporation Ltd. (POCOSO) putting all systems and protocols in place at war-footing to ensure there is no grid failure due to reduction in demand on April 5 at 9 pm
  • Power ministry scotches rumours that the power grid might fail due to the 9-minute blackout called by PM Modi on Sunday, April 5
  • Centre asks people to wear home-made masks if it is absolutely essential for them to step out of homes
  • Centre asks states to allow licensed street vendors to sell essential items
  • 8000 samples were tested across India on April 2, but the government said that testing will be need-based and will not be used as a confidence-boosting measure
  • Air India operating special flights to fly passengers stuck in India since the lockdown
  • For the first time in history, Darjeeling loses first flush tea due to suspension of garden work for Covid-19 outbreak
  • Supreme Court asks journalists to be responsible and publish only the official version of news after it was brought to its notice that migrant exodus started after the 'fake' news that the lockdown will be extended to three months
Total count stands ar 3082 as India records 16 Covid-19 deaths, the highest in a single day
oppn parties
India Should be in Top 10 in Global Competitiveness Index

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2016-09-29 12:59:03

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
India has risen to the 39th spot on the Global Competitiveness Index compiled by the World Economic Forum (WEF), jumping up 16 places from last year. It had jumped 16 places last year too. In a survey that takes in data from 138 nations, this is a commendable achievement. But given India’s vast resources, legal and bureaucratic machinery, internal connectivity, ports, business acumen, educated workforce and consumer spending prowess, this is still not the ideal situation. Although India has substantially closed the gap with China in two years, being at number 39 should not be a reason to gloat. India should reflect why we are not in the top ten.The Global Competitiveness Index is based on 12 parameters. India needs to do a lot in all the parameters.

The reasons are not far to seek. Widespread corruption has meant that the exploitation of resources have been lopsided. Despite recent efforts to induce transparency in policy decisions, the bureaucracy still swears by red tape. If it can find ways to delay a file, it will. There is no urgency on their part to seek ways to expedite matters. Hence, ease of doing business has not improved perceptibly. Efforts to digitize, despite a clarion call for Digital India, are half-hearted. Without full digitization, there will be no transparency, no innovativeness and no ease of doing business.

Infrastructure development has been bogged down by green clearances and local protests. Land, the biggest hurdle in recent times, has not been made the fulcrum of any new policy on rapid infrastructure and industrial development. While the government took a bold step in enacting a land law, it had to back out in face of opposition protests. Land being a state subject, there has been resistance from the states too. In the absence of a clear policy to acquire land, future competitiveness will always remain in doubt. No entity will invest if it fears that its investments will be blocked by protestors and legal delays.

Investments also remain an area of concern. As The Economic Times has pointed out in an editorial, investments remain sluggish and the current account deficit is now a minuscule decimal point of national income which means that foreign savings are not being utilized to boost domestic investment by the economy.

Further, despite reforms in the banking sector, nothing has been done to rid the banks of the burden of carrying bad debts in the form of sticky loans in their balance sheets. Employment is not rising as the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) has been contracting in successive months. It fell 2.4% in July. Agriculture as percentage of GDP has declined.

True competitiveness will only come through transparency in policy decisions by digitizing processes, cutting down on red tape to facilitate ease of doing business, providing financial muscle to banks, updating labour laws, having a clear land acquisition policy and a stable tax regime. Otherwise Make in India will remain a distant dream. A top ten spot in Global Competitiveness Index can only be achieved if things are made to happen with firm policy decisions.