Kerala allowed to borrow ₹2,261 cr. more

The Finance Ministry has enhanced Kerala’s borrowing limit by ₹2,261 crore, after the State joined seven others in completing reforms to improve the ease of doing business as stipulated by the Centre.

States have so far been granted an additional borrowing limit of about ₹23,100 crore linked to this aspect of the conditional reform-linked borrowings permitted this year.

The reforms for meeting the additional borrowing grant include the completion of first assessment of ‘District Level Business Reform Action Plan’, elimination of the requirements of renewal of registration certificates and licences obtained by businesses under various laws, and implementation of a computerised central random inspection system for allocation of inspectors.

In May, the Centre had allowed States to avail of enhanced borrowing limits of 2% of their Gross State Domestic Product, citing the COVID-19 pandemic. Half of this special dispensation was linked to the States undertaking citizen-centric reforms.

The four areas identiffied were implementation of ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ system, ease of doing business, urban local body and utilities’ reforms and power sector reforms.

“So far, 10 States have implemented the One Nation One Ration Card system, 8 States have done ease of doing business reforms, and 4 have done local body reforms,” the ministry said in a statement on Wednesday, adding States could overall borrow ₹56,526 crore additionally.

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