India Inc's Budget Wishlist: Tax Relief For Art Philanthropy, Boosting EV Ecosystem
Steps To Boost Indian Economy
While the main focus is to spur economic growth, India Inc bosses feel certain initiatives in this year's Budget will help various sectors like food, culture & art, real estate, fintech and automobile. Several suggestions like boosting 'Make In India' in order to generate employment, reviving consumer demand and reintroducing the subvention scheme have also been doing the rounds.
As the day nears, here are some suggestions from top business leaders.
Sunil Gupta, MD & CEO, Avis India
The road connectivity must also be improved between major urban centres and tier-2/3 regions to bolster the growth of the travel and tourism sector.
Shreevar Kheruka, CEO, Borosil Glass Works
Given the deceleration in economic growth, the FM may be compelled to look at measures both for immediate impact and long-term growth. The Budget will have to play a fine balancing act between managing the deficit and providing a boost to flagging economic growth. Also, India's ease of doing business ranking improved last year from 77th to 63rd. The Government needs to push ahead with sustained regulatory reforms to provide a conducive business environment.
Sanjay Kumar, CEO & MD, Elior India
Furthermore, it is worse when it comes to food services provider or organised caterer of any sort. When the customer is billed, he or she can claim ITC on that purchase but the service provider cannot as that is considered as a restaurant. Due to this, while the restaurants are hiking up the prices to compensate for the loss of ITC, food service providers are left high and dry. As a consequence, it reflects negatively towards the motive of helping bring about an organisational approach to agriculture produces and streamline the process. We remain optimistic that the decision of bringing back the input tax credit will be considered under the cognisance and some change is hopeful. It is also important that more focus is given to the agricultural produce so that the area substantially gets highly streamlined. The need to spur private investment and therefore to have a more predictable tax regime which can allow us to kick start our acquisitions in India is mandatory. The industry is looking forward to a revised and much predictable tax regime along with the reintroduction of the input tax credit on food sales to streamline the GST in the sector.
Rishabh Mehra, Managing Director and CEO, Digital Mall of Asia
Looking at it as a major opportunity, the Government should look to spend higher on infrastructure and rural programs, and focus on tax cuts to boost personal consumption.
Prashant Sharma, Chief Investment Officer, Aviva Life Insurance
Neeraj Jain, CFO, Cosmo Films
Manish Khera, Founder & CEO, HAPPY
Kausshal Dugarr, Founder and CEO, Teabox
Jatin Ahuja, Founder & MD, Big Boy Toyz
Jasmeet Thind, Co-founder, Coutloot
Vikram Agarwal, Managing Director, Greendot Health Foods, part of Cornitos Nacho
Ashok Mohanani, Chairman of EKTA World, Vice-President of NAREDCO Maharashtra
A resolution on the liquidity crunch and of the NBFC crisis is crucial so providing the requisite incentives is expected. The sector also expects the Government to reintroduce the subvention scheme as it will eventually result in favour of both buyers and developers.
With the Government's goal for ‘Housing for all 2022’, the affordable housing is expected to flourish in 2020. To match with on-going price range in metros, it is imperative to increase the limit of affordable housing to Rs 1 crore from the current cap of Rs 45 lakh, or alternately increase the size limit to 60 sqmt from the current 30 sqmt. This will bring more projects and locations under the affordable ambit where a larger section of the population will be benefited. Apart from these, ensuring capital gains on par with shares to provide benefits to developers will help maintain the cash flow in the market.
Ashish Anand, CEO & MD, DAG
- There are indications that GST on art may be increased. I sincerely hope that is not the case, and in fact, it is rationalised at 5 per cent
- The Government should encourage patronage of the arts in public spaces/buildings by allocating a percentage of the spend on art
- Budget allocations to Government museums such as NGMA need to be increased which will further allow them to purchase art - something they have been constrained in doing
- Concessions and tax exemptions should be made for people bringing Indian art back to India from overseas
- There should be tax exemptions for art philanthropy. For example, collectors donating works to state museums or those setting up private museums should be given concessions
Anurag Avula, Co-founder & CEO, Shopmatic
Efforts should also be channeled on aiding up-skilling, so that individual entrepreneurs, hobbyists, crafts person and artisans are able to enhance their existing skills, and better leverage the online and offline opportunities available for them to achieve success.
Kunal Sawhney, CEO, Kalkine
Though India made a significant jump from 77th to 63rd position in the World Bank’s Ease Of Doing Business Ranking 2020, the country still needs to implement certain measures that can offer more autonomy to the industry to perform. Streamlining the regulatory compliance mechanism and business-friendly policies can give a further boost to businesses.
Streamlined and fair tax reforms, and a fast-track dispute resolution forum can offer higher transparency for investors seeking to invest in India. The Government can think over constituting a GST-specific federal body that can provide more clarity over the indirect tax besides addressing grievances related to the tax.
Issues like slowest pace of economic growth, sluggish consumer demand and decelerating private investment have been draining business confidence continuously in the country, suggesting a need for robust and deep-rooted structural reforms to revive the economy.
Promoting skill development via higher education can bolster the economy’s sluggish growth. Stimulating credit growth is essential to give a boost to the nation’s investment cycle. The Government should give significant emphasis to banks and other lending institutions, which are battling with liquidity constraints, finding it more difficult to meet their funding needs.