Giving his immediate reactions to the Central Budget Proposals for 2022‑23 presented by Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, Hon’ble Minister of Finance, Government of India at the Parliament today, the 1st February, 2022, Shri Ramesh Kumar Saraogi, President, Bharat Chamber of Commerce has issued the following Statement to the Press:
“The Finance Minister has encouraged all stakeholders by announcing the projected
GDP growth at 9.2 per cent for 2022-23. Most of the proposals aim to address the grass-roots of economic development with integrated long term development ‘amrit kaal’, Shri Saraogi observed.
“On the whole the Budget is forward looking, futuristic and inclusive, aimed at creating jobs, the President, Shri Ramesh Kumar Saraogi stated.
“The most important aspect in this growth is the emphasis on sustained infrastructural development with digital skeleton stretching out to all sectors. In this direction, Digital University, Digital Health Care, National Tele-Mental Health Programme, increase in health infrastructure, Digital Banking and Financial Ecosystem including integration of post offices with banks, promotion of application of drones, low carbon clean energy development strategy are forward looking concepts for future growth proposals. Interconnectivity of roadways and rivers are forward looking approaches. Shri Saraogi emphasised that on the whole, more than 35 per cent increase in capital expenditure demonstrates the accomplishment of last year’s allocation.
“The proposal for introduction of Digital currency using block chain technology is welcome, but the 30 per cent taxation on digital transfer appears to be counter-productive, the President felt.
“Emphasis on housing in PM Housing Yojana, agricultural infrastructural development, thrust on logistics is going to give momentum for growth and generate employment, Shri Saraogi observed.
“Emphasis on skilling and re-skilling in partnership with the industries was long overdue, the Chamber President opined.
“Extension of credit facilitation for MSMEs, extension of concessional Income Tax for Start-ups and new industries, help for revitalisation of hospitality, travel and tourism and related sectors are laudable proposals, he stated.
“The extension of the ECLGS by another year will definitely provide relief to the MSMEs, specially the ones in the hospitality sector, which are yet to regain their pre-pandemic level of business. The announcement for widening the scope of portals meant for supporting MSMEs is another positive sign. It is expected that more MSMEs may be brought under the ambit of various schemes by the end of 2022, provided technical glitches are removed from the online platforms, Shri Saraogi observed.
“Reforms in SEZ Regulations with the involvement of the State and Custom Duty including concessional duty on raw materials and phasing out of duty on machineries manufactured in India are in line with the concept of taking self-reliance further, the Chamber President emphasised.
“The Finance Minister proudly announced the highest ever collection of GST in January, 2022. This indicates that the economy is becoming more and more productive to generate revenue, both for the Centre and the State. May be, for this reason, the Finance Minister has left the Income Tax aspects untouched, Shri Saraogi observed.
“On the Direct Taxes front, the newly announced provision for correcting errors in tax estimation, and uploading an updated return within two years is laudable. However, it was expected that the Hon’ble Finance Minister would provide clarifications on the faceless scheme for assessment and appeals under the income tax, Shri Saraogi added.
“Emphasis on Green Energy, Solar Energy in particular, is expected to reduce consumption of coal for production of electricity. The proposal for production of chemicals from coal will, therefore, benefit the Coal Mining Industry in the Eastern Region, the President felt.
“Incentives to Private Companies to invest in R&D for defence manufacture will undoubtedly boost defence production. At the same time, creation of the Third Defence Corridor in Eastern Region has once again been over looked, Shri Saraogi lamented.”