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John considers this conflict of interest to be the main hindrance towards establishing good governance.

I want to know why to be has been used here.

  • It doesn't 'have' to be used. You can omit it. – user178049 Dec 18 '18 at 4:47
  • It has the same meaning as the finite "... that this conflict of interest is the main hindrance ...". Just two different ways of saying the same thing. – BillJ Dec 18 '18 at 10:10
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"to be" is a verb in this case.

The sentence simply means "John considers that this conflict of interest is the main hindrance towards establishing good governance."

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