Business Gallery The top announcements made in Union Budget 2015 The 2015 Union Budget last year was the first full-fledged budget presented by the Narendra Modi administration after it was sworn to power in the Lok Sabha elections of 2014. The government hiked the excise duty on cigarettes, tobacco products, packed condensed milk, peanut butter, making the consumption of these products more expensive. By increasing the service tax from the current 12.36% to 14%, eating out, using credit and debit cards, cabs and mobile phones all became expensive. The education cess has been absorbed as an increase in the service tax rate from 12 per cent to 14 per cent, bringing it into the shareable pool. The government announced that it would set up MUDRA, a bank to finance the setting up of small and micro-units and thereby encourage entrepreneurship among SC/STs and OBCs. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in his budget speech that all public sector ports owned by the Union government will be encouraged to convert into corporate entities from a trustee setup to bring about operational efficiency and financial autonomy.