NEW DELHI: India will come out with a National Statistical Business Register that will have data on all business enterprises in the country collated based on the results of the ongoing seventh economic census, officials familiar with the development said.
The register will have a district-wise list of all business enterprises and establishments engaged in production or distribution of goods or services, and it will be updated regularly using data from Goods and Services Tax Network, databases of Employees’ State Insurance Corporation, Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation, and those with the corporate affairs ministry, they said.
“The census will provide a framework for dynamic register which can be updated using the data from other departments including GSTN,” said an official in the know of the development.
The data collected is expected to help improve the quality of national accounts and provide input for the proposed annual survey of services.
The Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI) wants to put in place such a register to strengthen the assessment of economic activity by digitising enterprises’ data.
The register will have details such as the name of an enterprise, its location, activities, type of ownership, number of workers and PAN/TAN.
The ministry had earlier reached out to the finance ministry to share GST data such as quarterly tax collections and information on tax paying units in order to make the national accounts robust.
ROBUST SERVICES DATA
The government also expects the data to help it with the proposed Annual Survey of Services for a more elaborate coverage of the services sector.
As per India’s first chief statistician Pronab Sen, the proposed services survey will draw from two sources—data from GSTN and a business register. All businesses with an annual turnover of over Rs 40 lakh have to register under GSTN. For North East and Jammu and Kashmir, the threshold is lower at Rs 20 lakh. “This is because unlike the Annual Survey of Industries, services have a dynamic frame,” Sen said. “These two datasets will then feed into the GDP estimates.” He said data on name, address and type of business from GSTN can be used in the planned survey.
Many states have begun the process of preparing their own business register. For instance, Rajasthan has been successful in developing business register with unique Business Registration Number (BRN), thereby integrating business establishments in that state. As per Sen, the government’s idea to conduct the economic census every three years is not wise because it is costly and requires deployment of a huge number of people. “With school teachers not permitted to conduct the survey, all state government functionaries are being involved and that is a challenge,” he said.