Financial Express

Ease of doing business – Law in winter session to decriminalise more offences: Piyush Goyal

The government is in the process of formulating a law that will decriminalise more civil offences to further reduce India Inc’s compliance burden and promote greater ease of doing business, commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal said on Friday.

It will likely introduce a Bill for this purpose in the upcoming winter session of Parliament, the minister said. The new law will build on the government’s initiatives in recent years to decriminalise several offences.

Speaking at the PHDCCI’s annual session 2022, Goyal said: “We are working on many other laws currently… DPIIT (Department for promotion of Industry and Internal Trade) is spearheading this in consultation with other ministries.”

In September last year, the government said it had decriminalised as many as 103 offences and removed 327 redundant provisions and laws in recent years. In addition to these, more than 30,000 compliance requirements have been abolished across ministries and states so far. The government has also been planning to trim the frequency of renewals and permits that are to be obtained by companies.

Industry, however, should shun “protectionist” tendencies and be willing to reap the advantage of free trade agreements that the country has already hammered out or is in the process of doing so, Goyal said.

Goyal said India has managed to rein in inflation within a reasonable level, despite strong external headwinds, just when even advanced nations are reeling under elevated price pressure.

Retail inflation inched up to 7% in August from 6.71% in the previous month. But it still remained way below the levels in even key advanced economies–8.3% in the US and 9.9% in the UK.

“We have continued to have reined in our inflation numbers pretty significantly compared to the rest of the world…Germany’s inflation has reached 11%,” he said.

India has emerged as a “shining star” in the world and continues to be the “fastest” growing economy, despite on-going global turmoil, he said.

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