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India’s progress in Ease of Doing Business Index

  • The World Bank on October 31, 2018 released the Doing Business Report 2019 titled as ‘Doing Business 2019: Training for Reform’, assessing and ranking countries on the basis of ease of doing business in the year 2018.
  • As per the 2019 Report, India jumped 23 places on the Ease of Doing Business Index to 77th rank, up from 100th rank last year. This year, India’s Distance to Frontier score improved to 67.23 from 60.76 in the previous year. 
  • The Doing Business assesses 190 economies and covers 10 indicators which span the lifecycle of a business. It ranks countries on the basis of Distance to Frontier (DTF), a score that shows the gap of an economy to the global best practice.
  • India improved its rank in 6 out of 10 indicators and has moved closer to international best practices (Distance to Frontier score) on 7 out of the 10 indicators. The most striking improvements have been registered in the indicators related to ‘Construction Permits’and ‘Trading across Borders’.


India’s improvement in the Ease of Doing Business ranking is significant considering that in 2017 as well, India had improved its rank by 30 places by being placed at 100th rank, a rare feat a diverse country like India.

The continued efforts of the Government have led to India’s improved rank by 53 positions in last two years and by 65 positions in last four years.

Year 2014 2016 2017 2018
Overall rank 142 130 100 77
DTF score 53.97 56.05 60.76 67.23

Such an improvement is accredited to commitment of the Government to carry out comprehensive and complex reforms. The government identified corrective measures based on feedback received and undertook regular review of reforms for removing bottlenecks in their implementation.

Changes in six indicators where India improved its rank

S. No. Indicator 2017 2018 Change
1 Construction Permits 181 52 +129
2 Trading Across Borders 146 80 +66
3 Starting a Business 156 137 +19
4 Getting Credit 29 22 +7
5 Getting Electricity 29 24 +5
6 Enforcing Contracts 164 163 +1
Overall rank 100 77 +23

India as one of the top improvers

  • The World Bank has recognized India as one of the top improvers for the year. This is the second consecutive year for which India has been recognized as one of the top improvers.
  • India is the first BRICS and South Asian country to be recognised as top improver in two consecutive years. India recorded the highest improvement in two years in the Doing business assessment by improving its rank by 53 positions.
  • India is now placed at first position among South Asian countries as against 6th in 2014.

Key Findings of 2019 Doing Business Report

  • Doing Business took note of record 314 regulatory reforms introduced by 128 countries between June 2, 2017, and May 1, 2018 for making it easier to do business in all areas measured by Doing Business. 
  • The top 10 economies in the ease of doing business rankings are New Zealand, Singapore, Denmark, Hong Kong SAR, Korea, Georgia, Norway, United States, United Kingdom and FYR Macedonia.
  • The economies with the most notable improvement in Doing Business 2019 are Afghanistan, Djibouti, China, Azerbaijan, India, Togo, Kenya, Cote d’Ivoire, Turkey and Rwanda.
  • Around one-third of all business regulatory reforms recorded by Doing Business 2019 were in the economies of Sub-Saharan Africa. Sub-Saharan Africa implemented a total of 107 reforms.
  • Brazil, Russia, India and China, the BRICS economies, introduced a total of 21 reforms, with getting electricity and trading across borders the most common areas of improvement.
  • The 10 top economies in the ranking share common features of regulatory efficiency and quality including mandatory inspections during construction, automated tools used by distribution utilities to restore service during power outages and automated specialised commercial courts.
  • Training opportunities for service providers and users are positively associated with the ease of doing business score.

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