Lower regulatory cost can help business run better: Shamika Ravi

If many businesses are choosing to be below the radar, it really is a reflection of the cost of regulations, says Shamika Ravi, a member of the Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council

There is a need to reduce the cost of regulations to help businesses run fairly and not stay “below the radar”, a senior economic policymaker said. “If many businesses are choosing to be below the radar, it really is a reflection of the cost of regulations,” Shamika Ravi, a member of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council said.

She, however, did not elaborate on the various facets which can help reduce the costs of regulation. It can be noted that the informal sector dominates the jobs market, accounting for over 80 per cent of the workforce. Terming the charges of jobless growth as a “false narrative” Ravi said a large number of jobs are indeed being created, but soon admitted that those are not enough to serve the needs.

Joining the discussion, NITI Aayog chief executive Amitabh Kant said there is a mismatch of skills as well, which is resulting in worries on the employment front. Blaming the “Anglo-Saxon” model of education for the lack of necessary skills, he said the system inherited from the British focuses on clearing exams at every level without looking at skills.

He said government has opened tinkering labs across 2,500 skills to address these deficiencies and added that it plans to extend it to 30,000 schools soon. Kant said our labour laws are “antiquated” and will need to change if we were to achieve the goal of job growth, he said, adding this requires political consensus.

The country also cannot depend on domestic demand alone to push economic growth but  will have to develop a strategy to boost exports, he said. Ravi also expressed surprise at the high amount of interest for low government jobs being shown by highly qualified people and pitched for a detailed study on the same. Kant urged large companies to pay their small size vendors on time so as to develop an entrepreneurial ecosystem.

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