We welcome the measures taken in the Union Budget 2020-2021 pertaining to the agriculture and fisheries sector. I have always maintained that fish is the highest and easiest profit-making commodity and it is a sector that can provide employment to numerous youths. The government has also realized the potential of the sector and proposed schemes that will not only benefit the sector but the overall economy of the country. Adequate focus has been given to the marine fishery resources as well.
The 3477 ‘SagarMitras’ and 500 fish farmer organisations as well as fish processing and marketing will boost employment opportunities in the sector. The aim to increase fish production to 200 lakh tonnes by 2023 will ensure northward growth. Enhancing fishery exports will also add to the growth.
The expansion of agricultural credit to Rs 15 lakh crore will only mean more financial aid for farmers and improve the sector.
However, the livestock feed industry was expecting an address on the raw material deficit as well as pricing issue that has been plaguing the industry for quite long now and offer some relief. Emphasis should have also been given to farmer’s price realisation issue in the poultry sector.
The introduction of Kisan Rail by Indian Railways for quick and easy transport of perishables across the country and Krishi Udaan by the Ministry of Civil Aviation on international and national routes will immensely help improve value realisation, especially, in the North East states and tribal districts. This will uplift the sector further.
Chandrahas Panigrahi, CMO and Consumer Business Head, Acer India.
"This is positive budget overall from the technology focus point of view. We are pleased that the Government is allocating Rs. 8,000 crore for the National Mission on Quantum Computing and Technology. The government’s move on encouraging manufacturing of electronic equipment in India is also a big step as this would provide much needed impetus to technology and manufacturing sector, which has been developing capacities and generating employment opportunities. Also, more focus on technology such as Machine Learning, Robotics, AI will support the industry to grow and establish India as a robust ecosystem for technology and innovation,” Chandrahas Panigrahi, CMO and Consumer Business Head, Acer India.
N. H. Bhansali, CEO – Finance, Strategy & Business Development and CFO, Emami Limited.
Expectation from the Union Budget were not very high, in view of the fact that few important steps have already been taken by the Government like the reduction in Corporate Tax prior to the budget. Looking at the current market scenario, where growth has slowed down, the focus is on stimulating growth rather than fiscal discipline. Accordingly, the Finance Minister has announced many steps for furtherance of agriculture, commerce, industry, services and exports. Withdrawal of DDT and relaxation of FPI norms are welcome steps to boost investor confidence. This should also result into building consumer confidence gradually over a period of time. In the given circumstances, one could not have expected many relaxations affecting the exchequer. Therefore, in overall, this budget appears to be balanced with no big immediate impact on current state of economy.
Reaction to Union Budget 2020 – Professor Mahadeo Jaiswal, Director, IIM Sambalpur
The Union Budget for FY20-21 has put emphasis on Aspirational India and a Caring Society for a more inclusive budget that would benefit all sections of the society. There are two sides to the budget that was announced today. The positive side is that the corporate tax has been reduced to 15% which will now be among the lowest in the world which will boost the industry. No compulsory audit for small businesses of up to INR 5 crore which was earlier INR 1 crore will further ensure ease of doing business. This will also uplift the industry and take forward the restructuring and reshaping. Reduction of income tax will increase individual income. This will mean that people will eventually have more money to spend.
Introduction of Foreign Direct Investment and External Commercial Borrowings will be beneficial to the education sector. It will help improve the quality of education in the country further. Offering online degrees by institutions who are ranked within top 100 in the National Institutional Ranking framework will promote online education and provide quality education to students of deprived section of the society.
There are also a few concerns with the budget. A large number of MSMEs in India are unorganized and operate as individual proprietors. Since they are not registered as a company, their tax liability will still be very high. If they earn 15 lakhs, they will have to pay 30% tax as individuals. This would mean small companies will pay more tax than large companies. This should have been taken care of. I would have expected more tax cut for higher income earnings. Moreover, GST is still a challenge for the MSME sector. They should have been given a tax holiday in order to boost the sector. Skill is a very big area. It creates employment and entrepreneurship. Investment in skill development could have been higher. Overall, the budget is more investment friendly and corporate friendly. Emphasis has also been given to welfare including education, health and agriculture.
Rakshit Desai, Managing Director, FCM Travel Solutions – Indian Subsidiary of Flight Centre Travel Group.
“The tourism industry is a crucial contributor to India’s GDP and we appreciate that the Union Budget 2020-21 presented today by the honourable Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman reflects a potential for growth in domestic and inbound tourism. We see a clear focus on revitalizing the aviation and tourism sector which will also boost employment in the industry. Several initiatives like enhancing the role of AI and machine learning will make the industry more technologically competent and help us become future ready. The decision to add 100 more airports by 2022 under the Udaan scheme is a much anticipated support to the sector. It will further enhance regional air connectivity, making travel affordable and accessible across the country. With regards to the road connectivity, the central government’s plan to construct 2500 access control highways, 9000 km eco-development corridors, 200 coastal and port roads, 2000 km strategic highways along with the Delhi-Mumbai expressway and two other corridors to be completed by 2023 are commendable initiatives for bridging the urban–rural divide and significantly bolstering growth in the sector. Allocation of Rs 3,100 crore to Cultural Ministry for developing five archaeological sites as iconic sites with on-site museums along with a tribal museum in Ranchi are laudable and will impact the tourism industry positively in the coming years. Thankfully tourism is now being viewed as an important growth driver of the economy.
VELS UNIVERSITY: Ishari K Ganesh, Chancellor Vels University
The move towards encouraging higher education in India through ‘Study in India’ initiative is highly commendable. By introducing ‘Ind-SAT’ exam for Asian and African students, India can emerge as a destination for quality higher education. Also, happy to note that the budget has taken into consideration that India will have the largest number of working population in 2030, by placing emphasis on skill education. Steps taken to introduce online education was also a much needed one in today’s scenario as it will help in ensuring accessible education for all.
KAUVERY HOSPITAL: Dr. Chandrakumar, Executive Chairman & Managing Director, Kauvery Hospitals
It is really encouraging that the government is trying to promote growth of hospital infrastructure through PPP mode across 112 districts in tier 2 and tier 3 cities, through Viability Gap Funding Window, which will help in improving the accessibility of quality healthcare. We are happy to see the support extended towards developing and improving the skill sets of teachers, nurses, para-medical staff and care-givers
Rishi Chandiok, Regional Director (South Asia), QNET Ltd.
This is a positive budget with good balance supporting the digital revolution, industry and individual citizen. The allocation of 69,000 crores towards better healthcare for tier 2 and 3 towns, is a welcome move. The government’s focus on promoting entrepreneurship through better policy and better access to funding will boost innovation in the country. Reduction in personal tax will boost saving and enhance spending power of the middle-income group. Overall, we are positive about the measures taken in the budget to take our economy forward.
TVS TYRES: SPOKESPERSON – P.Srinivasavaradhan, President, TVS Srichakra Ltd
We welcome the steps on revisions in personal income tax slabs under the new tax scheme, with the changed direct tax structure some surplus income will be available which can drive consumption. These are key to boost manufacturing and revive consumer sentiments. Major fund allocation for infrastructure, warehousing and logistics through rail, land and air will allow manufacturers to strengthen the business footprint domestically and are in line with international best practices. Will make India more competitive globally in the years to come. Consumers who had deferred their purchases now hold the key to aid growth in the automobile sector as well as the auto components sector. The economy can look forward to be buoyant and we are glad that the government in this budget has introduced steps in different areas to reduce the stress on the manufacturers as well as the customers. Government's step to extend support in the areas of technology upgradation, R&D will boost the auto component sector
Mr. Kamal Khetan, Chairman and Managing Director, Sunteck Realty Ltd
“The union budget predominantly focussed on revitalising the affordable housing which is an attempt to revive the animal spirit in the real estate market. In order to meet the ‘Housing For All by 2022’ and stimulate homebuyer’s sentiment, there is a direct intervention through one year extension on exemption of additional interest deduction of Rs. 1.5 lakh for home buyers under the affordable housing sector. Additionally, extending the tax holiday on the profits of developers involved in affordable housing projects to March 2021 is a huge support to de-bottleneck issues surrounding the affordable housing segment. It will provide an impetus to the sector for creating more demand for MIG and LIG group of homebuyers. Moreover, The trickledown effect of the tax saving will mean disposable income in the hands of the common man, thereby increasing consumption and investment in real estate.
T. Chitty Babu's Chairman & CEO, Akshaya Pvt. Ltd
We appreciate the key steps initiated by the Finance Minister to build a robust and reliable financial sector. The infusion of Rs 3.5 lakh crore into PSU banks will allow the banks to reduce the stress and aid real estate developers in procuring funds for the projects. Fund raising is an important aspect and we hope that it is implemented seamlessly in the coming financial year. The allocation of Rs 100 lakh crore to build infrastructure and boost warehousing opens fresh avenues for real estate developers to be part of the next phase of growth in the country in the next five years. Skill development at different levels of infrastructure will allow the real estate sector to bridge the gap and train the youth to address the evolving demands of the real estate sector. The changes introduced to income tax slabs and the flexibility to be part of old tax regime or the new regime is a progressive step to boost consumer sentiments. The tax holiday extended by the Finance Minister for the affordable housing projects by one more year will encourage developers to undertake and initiate more projects under the affordable housing segment.