Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha said the government will present the Budget for 2016-17 on February 29, which will set a roadmap for the coming three years.
“We are working hard on Budget that will be presented on February 29 and that will establish a roadmap for two or three years,” he said while addressing India-Korea Business Summit in New Delhi.
“We have consistently followed a very clear set of economic policies…we have laid out economic principles very well and we are very confident that we will be able to sustain high growth over a long period of time,” he said.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his second full-year budget is likely to focus on steps to accelerate economic growth that seems to have stagnated in 7-7.5 per cent range amid a global slowdown.
The Finance Minister’s Budget team comprises Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha, Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian and NITI Aayog vice chairman Arvind Panagariya.
The official team is led by Finance Secretary Ratan Watal, DEA Secretary Shaktikanta Das, Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia and Disinvestment Secretary Neeraj Gupta.
Speaking on the priorities of the government, Sinha said the first and foremost responsibility is to eliminate poverty.
“So we are pro-poor government but because we are pro-poor government we are pro-market government as well. If competition does not flourish, if market and companies do not flourish, how can we generate economic surplus, the tax revenues that will enable us to eliminate poverty,” he said.
“We are both a pro-poor and pro-market government. We believe in empowerment and not entitlement,” he added.
Besides, he said, the government is working on increasing productivity of agriculture.
Yesterday, the government announced National Crop Insurance Programme to protect farmers from crop damage due to natural calamity, he said, adding, the government has launched major programme on irrigation.
The government is focusing on expanding social security benefit to all.
In addition, the government has carried out reforms in the financial sector and increased investment in infrastructure.
Speed of construction of National Highways has gone up from 3 km per day to 18 km per day and the aim is to build road 30 km per day.