Left Menu
Development News Edition

Majority of UK businesses find it easier to do business in India: Report

PTI | London | Updated: 29-10-2020 19:21 IST | Created: 29-10-2020 19:21 IST
Majority of UK businesses find it easier to do business in India: Report

A survey of 106 UK organisations operating in India, spanning manufacturing, services, and higher education sectors, has said that a majority of them are finding it easier to do business in India. The 'Doing Business in India Report 2020' by the UK India Business Council (UKIBC), formally launched by UK Investment Minister Lord Gerry Grimstone during a virtual meeting on Thursday, found that 66 per cent of the surveyed UK businesses said they believe it is getting easier to do business in India as a result of "progressive reforms" and improvements in components of India's business environment, such as the availability of support and service providers, skilled labour, and supply chain.

"In spite of new challenges to business such as Brexit, COVID-19, and the global economic slowdown, UK companies not only remain deeply committed to India, but many are optimistic of expanding their business footprint in India," said UKIBC Group CEO Jayant Krishna. The survey also finds that the Atmanirbhar Bharat mission is seen by the UK firms as an opportunity to do more business in India by leveraging UK's innovation for manufacturing in India, with more than three-quarters (77 per cent) of respondents positive about the Indian government's flagship self-reliance mission.

This report comes as the UK and India committed to an Enhanced Trade Partnership at the recent India-UK Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) meeting between Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal and his UK counterpart, Liz Truss. While a free trade agreement (FTA) remains an eventual goal, the immediate priority has been identified as removing market access barriers and making it easier for companies to operate in each other's markets.

"The positively-balanced findings of this report are tremendously encouraging. There is much still to do to remove the persistent barriers to doing business in India, particularly improvement to bureaucratic procedures and the application of the tax regime, which is a persistent concern for businesses in India. Yet, the optimism and commitment amongst UK businesses is telling of the strength of the UK-India relationship and scope for growth,” said UKIBC Chair Richard Heald. The most frequently selected obstacle to doing business in India in the report is flagged as “legal and regulatory barriers”, with just over half of all respondents selecting it in their top five. However, there has been a noticeable fall from a selection rate of 66 per cent of respondents in 2018 to 51 per cent in 2020.

The most pressing regulatory impediments highlighted are foreign exchange regulations, goods and services tax (GST), import tariffs, alignment with international standards and incorporation of company. Taxation issues, corruption, and finding a suitable partner complete the list of concerns.

The report finds: "UK investors expect the certainty of a stable tax regime. UK businesses tend not to anticipate that key rules of the game would be changed drastically after their investments have been made. "From 2012 onwards, the policy of retrospective taxation has been a dampener in the inflow of foreign capital from the UK and elsewhere into India. Its redressal would remove a significant barrier to do business." The survey suggests that improving bureaucratic processes with greater accountability, increasing regulatory certainty, simplification of the GST processes, improving the quality of infrastructure and making single window clearance effective were the most sought-after reforms by UK businesses, in that order.

For the third year running, Maharashtra came out as the state with maximum incremental improvement, followed by Karnataka, Delhi, Gujarat, and Tamil Nadu, in that order. Next in sequence were Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Chandigarh and Haryana to complete the top 10 in the UKIBC’s sixth annual report on 'Doing Business in India: The UK Prespective'.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Turbulence surrounding tobacco control in Ghana

... ...

Refugee compassion and response: Ideas to mitigate disasters now and in their future

Their homeland becomes a forbidden territory for them and more likely than not, their journey to foreign soil is no less traumatizing, not to say deadly. It is crucial to help refugees live a life of dignity and purpose....

Inadequate water infrastructure causes a tidal wave of coronavirus in rural Alaska

... ...

Videos

Latest News

Irish PM hopeful Brexit deal can be done this week - report

British and European Union negotiators have the options in front of them to conclude a Brexit free-trade deal this week, Irish Prime Minister Micheal Martin was quoted as saying on Tuesday, expressing hope that they would succeed.There is a...

PRESS DIGEST- Financial Times - Dec. 1

The following are the top stories in the Financial Times. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy. Headlines- Arcadia retail group collapses into administration httpson.ft.com3fU0pRc - ExxonMobil slashes...

U.S. judge rejects $648 mln Bayer PCB contamination settlement

A federal judge has rejected Bayer AGs proposed 648 million settlement of class-action litigation by cities and other claimants over contamination from polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, made by the former Monsanto Co.In a Nov. 25 decision...

Biden speaks with UN chief, discusses strengthening partnership on urgent global issues

US President-elect Joe Biden on Monday spoke with United Nations Secretary-General Antnio Guterresas as the two discussed the need to strengthen their partnership on urgent global issues including combatting COVID-19, the transition said. T...

Give Feedback