New Delhi, January 31, 2017

The industry bodies pitched for lowering personal as well as corporate income tax to boost demand in the Budget

India Inc today said the Economic Survey has correctly assessed challenges facing the country today which is indicative of a bold and reformative Budget to be presented tomorrow.

Besides, industry captains feel that the 6.75-7.5 per cent GDP growth estimate for 2017-18 too can be achieved. “The Survey, points to a likely bold and reformative Budget, which will have a strong focus on infrastructure, employment generation and easing business conditions. The issue of NPAs is most likely to be addressed coherently, along with taking stock of the PPP logjams.

“The survey scores on recognising the economy’s shortcomings, prescribing the required action and setting an optimistic and expectant tone for tomorrow’s budget,” KPMG India CEO Richard Rekhy said.

The industry bodies also pitched for lowering personal as well as corporate income tax to boost demand in the Budget. “The Survey has rightly picked up the potential risks to the global economy and its impact on India in the form of higher oil prices, trade tensions from sharp currency movements and geo-political factors. An upsurge in protectionism that could affect India’s exports, is surely a matter of concern,” Assocham President Sunil Kanoria said.

CII described the 2016-17 report card of the state of the economy tabled by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Parliament as a forward-looking, comprehensive and objective analysis. “We are hopeful that the Budget to be presented tomorrow would deal with the aspects of creating demand, especially through direct tax interventions on the personal income tax and corporate taxation side,” CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said.

“To reap the long-term benefits of demonetisation, there is a need to have follow-up actions such as providing a boost to demand, lowering of tax rates, widening of tax base and reforming the tax administration. We hope that the Union Budget to be presented tomorrow will include measures in these areas,” Ficci President Pankaj Patel said.

“We are hopeful that the Budget to be presented tomorrow would deal with the aspects of creating demand, especially through direct tax interventions on the personal income tax and corporate taxation side,” Banerjee said.

India’s economic growth has been pegged at 6.5 per cent for the current fiscal, down from 7.6 per cent recorded in the last financial year, but is expected to rebound in the range of 6.75-7.5 per cent in 2017-18, according to the Economic Survey.

The Survey lists some of the challenges that might impede India’s progress. These include ambivalence about property rights and the private sector, deficiencies in state capacity, especially in delivering essential services and inefficient redistribution.

[The Hindu Business Line]