Is there a silver line at the end of the tunnel? Indian corporates believe corruption is the biggest stumbling block in development.
Sopan Correspondent / New Delhi
With India aiming for a 9% GDP growth, the rising level of bribery and corruption cases have cast a dark cloud on the growth story and threatening to derail it.
KPMG Forensics conducted an extensive survey among leading Indian corporates to an insight into the challenges faced by them due to corruption, the report of which was released last month.
The findings of the survey are an aye-opener. 68% of survey respondents believe that India can achieve more than projected 9 per cent GDP growth if corruption is controlled, 51% respondents fear that rising corruption will make India less attractive for foreign investment. A whopping 90% felt that corruption negatively impacts the performance of stock markets, 99% felt that the biggest impact of corruption on business was its tendency to skew the level playing field while 68% believe that in many cases corruption is induced by the private sector.
Interestingly a majority of the respondents felt that there was no silver lining and corruption level in India will remain at the same level irrespective of the legislations
Deepankar Sanwalka, Head, Risk & Compliance Group, KPMG India said, “We realized that there was an uneasy sentiment among the corporates in India about the recent developments. Through this survey we have tried to find the concerns, apprehensions and the challenges faced by different sectors and have also laid stress on various steps that have to be taken immediately to restore confidence in the Indian economy. This survey is crucial as the global business fraternity is closely watching what is happening in India.”
The survey reveals how the Indian corporate sector is battling corruption and at the same time looking for ways to play a greater role in improving the system to ensure a thriving business environment in India.
“To make this survey a comprehensive one, we have ensured that all major industries are covered. All the participating corporates were keen to be part of this survey and express their concerns about the state of affairs, which they believe has major implications for the business environment in one of the fastest growing economies in the world” said Rohit Mahajan, Executive Director, Forensic Services, KPMG-India.
The respondents to the survey believed that a solid, foolproof mechanism should be put in place by the government to check and arrest the rising cases of corruption and bribery. Strict enforcement of existing provisions under law, for both the taker and giver, is believed to be need of the hour to prevent further erosion of trust and credibility of India’s economic success. The industry appeared poised to actively participate by willing to support a legislation, which will deal with the bribe-giver with equal strictness as that with the bribe-taker.
The corporate sector has also demanded a structured and effective whistle blowing mechanism to report potential bribery or corruption issues; thereby, ensuring more scams come under the public purview, while assuring complete security to the whistleblower. There is also a realization of the importance of implementing new steps within the organization to tackle and prevent promotion of bribery and corruption. Industry bodies have also been advised to take the lead in standing up against bribery and corruption in their respective sectors to ensure a corruption free environment. India Inc strongly believes that its efforts along with the steps taken by the Government of India can go a long way in diminishing corruption.