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Union Budget 2014-15: Who said what

Reactions on Arun Jaitley's Budget 2014-15 speech.

Arun Jaitley Arun Jaitley

Here are the reactions of INC on FM Arun Jaitley’s speech on Budget 2014-15:

Sandeep Ladda (India Technology leader, PwC India)

“Liberalisation of FDI in eCommerce sector will provide much-needed certainty to foreign players and to a sector that has the promise to provide increased commerce and generate employment in the country. This will also provide boost to the sector and create healthy competition so as to benefit all the constituents in the ecosystem – consumers, government, eCommerce players, and retailers in general”.

Neeraj Roy (MD & CEO), Hungama Digital Media Entertainment

“Whilst it is very encouraging to see the government giving more attention to the internet and support of animation and gaming, I view the initial allocations as a small step in the right direction. China has a near $ 1 Trillion internet economy, India will transition from 2G to 4G and add another 400 million mobile internet users over the next 3 years, we need an unprecedented push toward digital for a significantly higher consumer adoption as it will spark productivity across sectors. The aspect of bringing back online advertising into the service tax ambit, whilst it is still a fledgling segment, is therefore almost a conflicting action and not a welcome move.”

 

 

 Debjani Ghosh (Vice President Sales & Marketing Group, Managing Director South Asia), Intel

“We at Intel have always been strong advocates of the use of technology for nation building. We are pleased to see the government putting its efforts in tapping the potential for ICT to promote the interests of our citizens in a sustainable manner enabling them to contribute across different sectors of progress.

This budget envisages using ICT to deliver services to citizens as well as furthering the growth of other sectors like the Railways. Setting aside of funds for the Digital India program to ensure broadband connectivity at the village level and in facilitating transparent governance is a step in the right direction and we applaud the government for the same. It is very heartening to see that the government’s commitment in ensuring ubiquitous connectivity, digitizing of land records and moving to a paperless office in five years.

The allocation of funds in building Smart Cities  and the decision to set up 7 Industrial Smart Cities is very encouraging. We also welcome the government’s move in empowering women with the allocation of the funds for the ‘Beti padhao, beti badhao yojana’. Fixing basic issues first will automatically help in fixing the larger problems. The steps taken to help local technology manufacturers and the focus on entrepreneurship are steps in the right direction and we hope that the local ecosystem seizes the opportunity to customize solutions to take technology to the grassroots.

This Union budget stays true to a lot of the items listed in the manifesto and we’re happy to see the government delivering on the election promises. This budget truly resonates with the government’s vison of bringing back optimism and investor confidence while keeping an eye on the fiscal deficit.  In my opinion, this is a very progressive budget with the right intent and priorities and I welcome the focus on IT as an enabler for development with open arms. This is a great opportunity for the Indian IT industry to redefine itself and become a positive contributor to national growth.”

 

 

Divya Baweja (Partner), Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP

Considering the inflationary trends in the economy, a substantial increase in the Income tax slab was expected. However, there is only a marginal relief of INR 5,000 (excluding surcharge and Cess) in the Union Budget 2014, leading to a disappointment to the individual tax payers. This relief of INR 5000 is without considering the impact of the increased deduction under Section 80C of the Income tax Act.

Although, the Government seems to be focused on providing incentives for women, no special tax relief has been granted to the working women.

Opposition lambasts Modi’s budget

Opposition parties on Thursday termed Narendra Modi government’s maiden budget a “disappointment” and an “anti-poor” exercise which can “benefit only the rich”.

BD Park (President & CEO), Samsung India

“The increase in investment limits in FDI ( foreign direct investment ) announced in the 2014 budget will favorably impact the economy.

Significant encouragement has been provided to domestic manufacturing that will likely enhance both local production and employment, especially in the sectors of retail and e-commerce. Measures on tax reforms like advance rulings, tax settlement mechanisms and APA ( advance pricing agreements ) etc. will contribute to improving investors’ confidence and removing uncertainty regarding taxation.

The introduction of inter-quartile range in transfer pricing as well as the set up of a committee to evaluate retrospective taxation are positive steps. Outlays for improving infrastructure in ports, roads, airports, Smart Cities as well as education related initiatives and the funding model resonate well with the country’s growth plans. ”

#Budget2014 listless,visionless,no gameplan,huge disappointment.This was UPA3 Budget.Spending on memorials instead of social sector.

 

Kuldip Kumar (Executive Director – Tax & Regulatory), PwC India

“Basic tax exemption limit for individuals and senior citizens raised by Rs 50,000, resulting in tax saving of Rs 5150/- for all tax payers.

Enhancement of 80C limit to 1.5 lacs will help the tax payers to save more taxes. Individuals earning upto Rs 400,000 and making investment of 1.5 lacs under 80C will go out of tax net. Enhancing the PPF limit from 1 lac to 1.5 lacs to help the individuals to save more in tax free income investments.”

Mr. N. Chandrasekaran (CEO & MD), Tata Consultancy Services
 
“The Finance Minister’s maiden budget signals, both in sentiment and policy, the new government’s intention to drive the next generation of reforms and swiftly put India on a higher GDP growth path.

It has provided key sectors like agriculture, manufacturing and infrastructure with impetus and incentives to pursue growth. It has spelt out its commitment to public-private partnerships to drive investment and encouraged retail savers to invest more in debt and equity. The FM has also acted positively to further develop quality higher education and encourage skill development programs.

For the IT sector, the budget has provided clarity on some long-pending issues in transfer pricing and offered a collaborative framework to minimise future disputes. Above all, the government has strongly signalled that we will see lot more reforms across sectors shortly. This is a positive start to a long term process. ”

Bhaskar Pramanik (Chairman) Microsoft India

There were five specific priorities that I was looking for to be addressed in this maiden budget by the new Government – ubiquitous use of technology for inclusive growth, enhancing the education ecosystem, promoting a tax regime that is stable and growth oriented, focus on the start-up ecosystem and greater impetus to the manufacturing sector. It is heartening to note that the budget has provided the right direction on these.

India’s transformation has to be powered by technology – this is well recognized by the Government and has been articulated in the various initiatives in the Budget. I see this budget setting the stage for higher growth on strong fundamentals of manufacturing and infrastructure sectors, built on the backbone of technology.

Mr. Sanjay Kapoor (Chairman), Micromax

“Budget is not a one day event; it is a journey to reach Government’s vision for its term. Given the current situation, budget creation was an arduous task by any standards!

The Finance Minister has made pragmatic choices around available resources and has articulated a road map towards reducing the fiscal deficit and fueling economic growth. While all of us hope he achieves the ambitious target of containing the fiscal deficit, executing it seems very challenging.

His focus on giving fillip to the infrastructure seems exhaustive and he has rightfully protected the common man’s interest in his first budget. While we welcome his stand on retrospective tax policy and intent to finalise GST this year, the current Government has the potential and mandate to take a stronger stance on subsidy and policy”

 

Arup Roy (Research Director), Gartner India

Overall I would view this budget to have a positive push to industries across the board and augurs well for IT industry as well.

This budget focuses clearly on growth, development and job creation with particular focus on infusing growth in manufacturing and infrastructure sectors. From industry perspective, the policies that would have major positive impact on the domestic IT uptake are: ‘Digital India’ program; “Good Governance”; and “one hundred smart cities” program. Also, FDI cap increase in defense and insurance sector is a huge positive and has direct bearing on IT industry.

This budget has also set aside funding for adding new top-notch educational institutions such as the IITs and IIMs in various cities, which is likely to have a long term impact on generating technical and management talent. Lastly the focus on micro and small and medium sized businesses and their enablement/empowerment with various schemes is a huge positive and is likely to have positive impact on the IT industry as well as such companies get empowered to resort to technology.

The orientation towards growth across sectors augurs well for the domestic IT industry however things more or less remain ‘status quo’ from offshore or exports perspective as there is no change in the position there. One area where we would have expected some concrete decision taken would be retrospective taxes and the position thereof. But overall, this is a balanced growth oriented budget with focus on accelerating on the fundamentals.

 

BD Park (President & CEO), Samsung India

“We expect the budget plan announced by the new government to further strengthen and develop the economy of India. ”

Amar Babu (MD), Lenovo India

‘The Modi government’s Budget for the year is positive, encouraging, and includes some much-needed reforms. With a strong focus on infrastructure, connectivity and with the rollout of GST, the FM has given a boost to the economy’s growth momentum, making it easier for businesses to operate.

The reduction in Income Tax for the salaried comes as a relief, with a resultant rise in disposable income, encouraging IT purchases. For indigenous manufacturers, the Budget has aptly addressed the issue of inverted duty structure, thus enhancing local manufacturing. Furthermore, with a boost given to e-governance, and the focus on broadband penetration, the Budget has adequately harnessed technology to propel future growth.

Overall, this year’s Budget is optimistic and welcome, and it will be interesting to see how this plays out.’

 Mr. Hari Om Rai (Chairman & Managing Director), LAVA International

“Overall this is a positive budget in our perspective. Focus on domestic manufacturing, stable taxation structure, investments in Technology development fund and National rural Internet and Technology mission are welcome signs.

This augurs well for the Indian consumer and economy. Such positive intent will benefit the telecom & handset industry, especially companies like Lava International which are now looking to tap India’s manufacturing potential and create jobs in the country.

We do not feel there will be any cost passed on to the consumer due to the additional education cess on imported electronic products. However, we are assessing the details of the budget announcements and necessary steps will be taken if and when required.”

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