He said that this was made possible by a slew of policy measures undertaken by the present Government including enhanced public investment, kick starting stalled projects, improving the status of financial inclusion significantly among others.
The Finance Minister Jaitley was making the Opening Remarks during his Fourth Pre-Budget Consultative Meeting with the representatives of Indian Trade and Industry Associtions/Groups here today.
The Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley asked the representatives of Business and Trade Sector to increase the private sector spending especially in infrastructure sector. He said that the Government has taken many steps to improve governance by bringing in transparency and efficiency through systematic changes. Jaitley said that the present Government has given greater thrust on fiscal federalism and improving business environment through reforms in policies and regulation among others. Jaitley said that strong macro and micro economic indicators including fiscal fundamentals and follow of fiscal discipline present sound prospects for the Indian economy in future as well.
Various suggestions were received during the aforesaid Consultative Meeting. Major recommendations were as under:
- Reduction in Corporate Tax and withdrawal of tax incentives which will result in higher collections due to better compliance and will make India an attractive investment destination.
- Complete elimination or a major reduction in Minimum Alternate Tax (MAT) and higher public investment in infrastructure and social sector.
- Higher investment in irrigation and rural infrastructure sector as this will increase the spending capacity of the rural people which in turn will create demand for various items and increased economic activity.
- Increased focus on skill development by focussing more resources on training of trainers’ Programmes.
- Tax concession to both individual tax payer and Corporate Sector. Minimum exemption limit in case of Personal Income Tax be raised to Rs.5 lakh. After demonetisation, since banks will have lot of funds, therefore, interest rate be reduced for manufacturing and other sectors especially for micro, small and medium enterprises.
- States should levy heavy taxes on industry especially manufacturing sector mainly in higher energy/power charges which make them uncompetitive.
- Make instrument of cheque more stronger especially after demonetisation by blocking the amount of cheque in the drawer’s account and making amendments in Sec 138 of Negotiable Instruments Act for heavy penalty in case of bouncing of cheques.
- Measures be taken to revive private sector investment especially in infrastructure sector. Suggestion was made to give infrastructure status to Broadcasting Sector.
- To give more incentives to promote women entrepreneurs.