Opening Shop in India? Bring Scissors to Cut Red Tape

By Scott Baldauf writer of The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, December 16, 2004 | Go to article overview

Opening Shop in India? Bring Scissors to Cut Red Tape


Scott Baldauf writer of The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


So you want to start a business in India? Great. First jot down these rules. You will have to abide by them in order to get your permits from the Indian government. (And the state government, and the city government, too.)

Rule 1. Don't grow too large. Any business with more than 10 employees will be covered by the Indian Labor Act, which requires strict hiring and firing rules, short working hours, and generous pension funds.

Rule 2. Leave your accounting software at home. The government requires that all bank records, for instance, be kept in books, in duplicate. Computers didn't exist when the Constitution was written, so those records are invalid.

Rule 3. Don't forget the Government Seal Act of 1862. A holdover from British colonial rule, all Indian businessmen and government agents must be able to seal certain documents, with wax, with the imprint of the East India Company. The British are gone, the East India Company is, too, but the act remains on the books.

If all of this is too complicated, business experts say, a frequent practice is to offer local government officials a small bribe.

Much has been done in the past decade to simplify business rules here - to the applause of the World Bank and foreign investors. The new government last month made clear that economic reform would be its top priority. But the challenges of giving India an economic makeover are vast. For one, many bureaucrats like to keep things as they are, since it is how they derive their power and income. Also, many rules protect Indian businesses from foreign markets, and removing them is cause for concern.

But as a new World Bank report makes clear, India must improve its investment climate soon - from easing regulations to improving roads, airports, and power grids - or it will remain mired in poverty for another century at least.

"Until India does more to simplify its regulatory environment and improve its infrastructure, it will never achieve [the government's goal of] 8 percent growth," says one Western diplomat based in Delhi, speaking privately. Many businesses are bullish on India today because of the potential they see, he adds, but "few of those businesses are finding profits today."

India's government leaders - many of whom set India on its current reform path after a 40-year flirtation with socialism - seem to recognize how much work they have to do. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Opening Shop in India? Bring Scissors to Cut Red Tape
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.