With the new budget focussing on rural economy, the industry leaders have also cheered for the budget. A few reactions of such leaders on the budget:
“We welcome Budget 2018, especially with regards to e-Governance and Government’s effort in bringing efficiency, transparency, accountability and accessibility. Over the past few years, as connectivity in the country grew, e-governance has become a crucial part of governance. What began as computerization of government departments has now evolved to account for details like citizen centricity, service orientation, timely service and transparency. With the government aiming to build 100 Smart Cities with state-of-the-art amenities, the role of e-governance and digital technologies is only increasing.
India is expected to have 1.9 billion connected units by 2020. With such estimates, e-governance initiatives such as e-courts, e-Vidhan, e-panchayats and other initiatives announced today will only make lives simpler for the citizens in the country. We look forward to partner and support the Government to bring these initiatives to life.”
Shikhar Aggarwal, Joint Managing Director, BLS International Services Limited
“ Union budget 2018-19 has been positive and common man centric. Various government schemes in the past year have delivered on the Government’s promise of ‘Less Government and More Governance’ and the budget announcements have not been any different. The Economic Survey 2017-18 highlighted that out of a total outstanding credit of Rs 26,041 billion as in November 2017, 82.6% of the amount was lent to large enterprises and MSMEs got only 17.4 % of total credit and this situation needs attention. Terming MSMEs as the major engine of growth for the Indian economy, the finance minister allocated a sum of Rs. 3794 crore for credit support, capital & interest subsidy on innovation which would improve credit flow in this segment and solidify its position within the economy. Policies like demonetisation and GST have already initiated the process of formalisation of the MSMe sector, which helps in collection of financial information database thereby improving financing for the sector. Reduction of paper work, smoother loan sanctioning cycle and prompt decision making by banks would encourage more and more businesses to walk the straight path of transparency and governance. Additionally, rewarding good behaviour has been a consistent strategy of the current Government and unfailingly they set examples of the same. Reduction of the corporate tax rate for companies with an annual turnover of up to Rs 250 crore to 25% is a move which positively impacts the small, medium and micro enterprise segment. ”
Ankit Agarwal, MD at Alankit
“Affordable Housing and Infrastructure gets a significant push this Budget. As a result of the government’s move to create a dedicated fund for affordable housing, more developers will embrace this segment of real estate, creating much-needed traction on the ground. Enhanced spend on Infra aggregating to INR 14.34 lakh crore and monetisation of assets being held in the public sector undertakings through creation of InvITs, will fast-track the agenda of improving infrastructure in the country. Clarification around computation of tax in case of circle rate variation is a pragmatic step.”
Neeraj Sharma, Director, Grant Thornton Advisory Private Limited
“We welcome increase in custom duty of refractory products as this will reduce dumping from China and boost local manufacturing. Increase in domestic capacity utilisation will spur new investments in this sector which is critical to support the government’s vision of enhancing steel capacity in India to 300mil mt. The fillip to infrastructure development through expansion in railways, roads and ports also augurs well for refractory industry as it will increase steel and cement consumption. Dalmia Bharat Group has four plants and one R&D centre dedicated to refractories in India and employs approximately 3,000 people in the segment.”
Sameer Nagpal, CEO-Refractories, Dalmia Bharat Group
“Welcome measures for regulating regimes for venture capital funds and angel investors will ensure a further boost, especially to the start-up sector. Increased scholarships for select 1000 BTech students for PHDs at IITs and IISCs will strengthen domain knowledge and drive the innovation ecosystem.
The budget has also laid a lot of stress on improving the education system and set aside funds for training of untrained teachers, and doubled allocation for skilling with a special focus on new technology areas. Additionally, the use of blockchain will be encouraged to provide further impetus to the digital economy and fast-track the Digital India vision of the government. There is also the most important announcement around revolutionising healthcare and universal access to it. This will bring in a lot of attention to telemedicine and impact it will have on the holistic healthcare needs of approximately 50 crore beneficiaries. Overall, this year’s budget has raised the bar for the expectations of making India a self-reliant economy with the best set of skilled workforce and taking a huge leap towards being a global technology and manufacturing hub.”
Ashwini K Aggarwal, Chairman – India Electronics & Semiconductor Association (IESA)