Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented Budget 2016-17 in Parliament today. Sumit Mazumder, President, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) called the budget well-balanced and comprehensive.
Hailing it, Mr, Mazumdar said, “Budget 2016-17 is well-balanced and comprehensively addresses all aspects that industry was looking for, including revitalizing the rural economy, infrastructure build-up, relief for stressed assets, and simplification of taxes.”
He lauded the BJP-led government for adhering to the fiscal consolidation roadmap for this year as well as 2016-17. “CII is happy that the fiscal deficit as announced by the Finance Minister in Budget 2015-16 has been maintained given current compulsions of the Seventh Pay Commission and the challenging global situation.”
He also commended the macroeconomic priorities and structural reforms laid out in the Budget. “We believe that the focus on macroeconomic stability, boosting domestic demand and continued economic reforms would further cement India’s position as a haven of growth in a fragile global economy.”
The nine pillars of the Budget are well-strategized with emphasis on agriculture and doubling farmer incomes, healthcare, education, infrastructure and investments, and so on. Innovative schemes have been rolled out in all the nine areas, said Mr Mazumder.
“We particularly welcome the different ways adopted by Hon’ble Finance Minister to drive employment generation,” added the CII President. Budget 2016-17 undertakes several key initiatives for job creation in the formal sector, which was taken up consistently by CII. Contribution of EPF for new employees for three years, entrepreneurship development courses, changes in the transport sector, and so on would encourage job generation,” he added.
CII said it welcomes many initiatives on low-cost housing, as it will be a huge demand multiplier. In addition, the industry body stated that it welcomes measures to revive infrastructure investment such as the new credit rating system and the commitment to issue guidelines for renegotiation of PPPs.
However, CII said it “would have liked to see faster movement on reduction of corporate income taxes, as promised in the last Budget”.
During a Tele-Viewing Session organized by CII Telangana here today, Mr. Ramesh Datla, Vice Chairman, CII Southern Region & C&MD, Elico Ltd. opined that “Focus on farmer and rural economy will balance the rural and urban economy. However, we are hoping to get better clarity on taxation matters”, he said.
Industry Experts on Budget 2016-17
“New focus on reducing litigations will go a long way. Also the EPF reimbursement could play an important role in manufacturing sector companies.”, Mr. N Narasimhan, Managing Director, Tecumsech Products Company Ltd.
“Lot of thrust was given to infrastructure sector boosting the ports, roads, railways, and most importantly civil aviation. Budgeting unused and under-used airstrips is a good move. However, the Khelkar Report recommendations were not considered, though bringing private participation to the infrastructure sector was mentioned”, Mr. Sanjay Kapoor, General Manager, L&T Hyderabad Metro Ltd.
“Creating e-platform to market products and e-procurement by FCI are good moves. Also the rationalization of subsidy, if successful, will lead to lot of structural changes”, Mr. P Gopalakrishna, Senior Vice President, Coromandel Fertilizers ltd.
“This budget is an innovative and reformist budget. The online and e-platform initiatives in the education sector, including digital verification of certificates is an important move”, Prof. V S Rao, Vice Chancellor, BITS Pilani
“Positioning of Clean Energy Cess is a good move, which will reduce energy cost. Also allocating budget for improving sustainable water resource management is a welcome move. Also the proposal of rural electrification by May 2017 will help the renewable energy sector to a great extent”, Mr. S Raghupathy, Executive Director, CII Sorabji Godrej Green Business Centre
“Access to cheaper drugs was recognized by the budget and also emphasis on senior citizens health requirements were addressed. However R&D expenditure, which was earlier 200% exempted is now reduced to 150% and will further be reduced to 100%, which is a matter of concern”, Mr. V Parsuram, Head, Global R&D, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd.
“Dispute resolution and marginal tax relief are good initiatives but MAT is still a matter of concern”, Mr. Jitender Kumar, Partner, JBRK & Co
“MAT and Transfer Pricing still continues to be a concern for the industry. However the Start-Up incentives are welcome, though the change in ownership laws need to be addressed”, Mr. Suman Reddy, Managing Director, Pegasystems Inc
“Overall it is a good budget which will strengthen the Make in India initiative”, Mr. Krishna Prasad, Managing Director, Linkwell Telesystems Pvt. Ltd.
“FM presented the Budget in a Corporate Style where use of IT for efficiency was well addressed which will enhance domestic IT market. Mr. Shakti Sagar, Past Chairman, CII Andhra Pradesh & Former MD, ADP Ltd.