India’s leading industry associations have welcomed the emphasis given to agriculture and Medium and Small Enterprises in the India Budget 2018-19 presented to Parliament on Thursday. Most of the captains of industry felt that the budget was very much in line with the expectations .
Rashesh Shah, FICCI President said that the budget proposals will drive consumption in a big way, thus helping growth in other related sectors.
Sandeep Jajodia, Assocham President hailed the provision of over Rs 14.34 lakh crore on rural infrastructure that should aid employment generation in the farm sector. “ Relief to the salaried employees by way of Rs 40,000 per annum would leave more disposable income in the hands of the middle class and boost consumer demand,” Mr Jajodia added.
He also said what stands out is the reform in the agriculture marketing. “The launch of 585 e-mandis and linking them with 22,000 APMC mandis, without applying restrictive clause would help farmers as also those companies engaged in agri –processing, FMCG including organized big retail chains. One of the major problems associated with the Minimum Support Price (MSP) was its implementation.
Now, the Finance Minister has committed that the NITI Aayog would coordinate with the state governments to ensure that the farmers get price of their produce which is one and half times of the cost. “Initiatives like Operation Green to stabilize prices of highly political and consumer sensitive onion and potato would help ease the retail inflation and would help the RBI in keeping interest rates on lower side,” further said Mr Jajodia.
Rashesh Shah of FICCI said, ‘while we see a clear focus on the infrastructure sector development in the rural areas, the plans for such development in the urban areas including wider connectivity across the length and breadth of the country have also got the needed attention in the budget,”
The continuation of STT even while re-introducing LTCG will put some additional burden on the market participants. This, however, should not impact markets in the long-term. With the markets giving a compounded return of 15-16% over the last 20 years, a tax impacting 1.5% return should not affect the domestic investor appetite for equity investment, FICCI Chief added.
Finally, while consolidation process for the public-sector insurance companies has been indicated, FICCI hopes that a similar plan for the banking sector as was widely anticipated ahead of the budget will also be announced soon.
Sanjay Bhutani, CMO of Rivali Park, CCI Projects said that the budget had given a major boost to realty sector.
“Government’s initiative of allocating dedicated funds for the affordable housing scheme under NHB and One Crore houses under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) will prove to be a win-win situation for the supplier and the buyer alike. The real estate industry also welcomed the announcement of The Smart Cities Mission with government’s initiative to spend about INR 2,04 lakh crores to execute smart projects will be an added advantage for the Indian Property segment. The capital gains on immovable properties has brought about a positive atmosphere in the Indian Property segment”.