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  • Post Budget Industry Experts Comments

    Published on February 1, 2022

    1. Infrastructure Sector – Pradeep Misra, CMD, Rudrabhishek Enterprises Limited

    While keeping focus on growth, the Hon’ble FM has ensured that the budget is also inclusive in nature. It takes care of the specific sectors such as hospitality and education that have been deeply impacted by the pandemic. The special focus on PM Gati Shakti scheme will have a multiplier effect on the economy. The government’s target of expanding the road network by 25000 kms through an investment of INR 20000 crore in 2022-23 will strengthen the infrastructure at the grassroots levels. The announcement of Parvatmala scheme should fuel the development of eco-friendly tourism in the hilly, remote and ecologically fragile areas. The investment of INR 60000 crore for tap water connections scheme will be the boon for millions of Indians, especially among the economically weaker section. Additionally, the 400 Vande-Bharat trains will boost the land-transport. The crucial thing will be rolling out of projects on quicker pace and ensuring that the public private partnership programs are designed in a way that supports the companies involved in infrastructure sector, specifically the MSMEs. 

    It is good to see the continued emphasis on PMAY scheme as Rs. 48000 crores have been allocated with objective of completing 80 lakh houses for identified beneficiaries. The formation of high-level committee for urban capacity building and planning implementation is very welcome move. The increasing urbanization needs a very structured approach for cities’ sustainable growth over long time-frame. 

    The fiscal deficit pegged at 6.4% of GDP needs to be kept on watch. The government’s plan of disinvestment could have been elaborated further for clarity of industry. Also the special push much needed by the Real Estate industry as a whole is not addressed in the budget. We can expect follow-up announcements for greater push to the sector. 2. Real Estate Sector- Harpreet Singh HoraGroup Director, Realistic Realtors
    The government’s allotment of 48,000 crore to build around 80 lakh affordable homes is a positive initiative for real estate. The expansion of highways by 25,000 kms will catalyze the development of new realty clusters and allied industries. The boost to the infrastructure at the grassroots levels will fuel the demand for the sector in Tier 2 & 3 cities. Furthermore, the establishment of the high-level committee for Urban planning will greatly enhance the ease of doing business and result in raising the standards of living in Indian cities. The budget will sustain the momentum gained in past few months for real estate and gradually increase it during the FY 2022-23.
    3. Education and FinTech Sector- Rohit Gajbhiye, CEO, FinancepeerThe budget balances out both the short-term and long-term requirements of the country. Focus on Funds mobilization, Financial Inclusion, Modernization of Education infrastructure and curriculum, Special impetus for Startups and Entrepreneurship are some of the biggest takeaways from this budget. Startups have been given special recognition which reflects the government’s intent of building a conducive environment for business and entrepreneurship. 

    Financial inclusion initiates will benefit banks and NBFCs if appropriate infrastructure is provided. Digital Banking and Fintech emphasis, when combined with efforts to make conducting business easier, will further provide momentum to the already-growing Fintech space. The initiation of 75 digital banks across the country will strengthen the foundation of the Fintech sector. The establishment of the digital university will push the Ed-tech sector to the next level and widen the reach of the education sector. The announcements in the budget are the reflection of the growing significance of the fin-tech and allied sectors in the Indian economy. 

    4. Women EntrepreneursMeeta Nagpal, Founder Musical Dreams

    The Budget 2022 envisions a futuristic approach of the government towards enhancing the education and entrepreneurship in the country. The push to digital education through the PM e-Vidya scheme will help in increasing the penetration of digital education to remote areas. Apart from this, the announcement of the digital university will augment the reach of higher education among those who are deprived of higher education due to lack of resources. In addition to enhancing education, the finance minister has laid a special emphasis on startups which shows the intent of the government towards giving impetus to the entrepreneurship ecosystem. Overall, the budget aims at strengthening the fundamental components of the country that will drive holistic growth.  

    5. Retail Sector- Ravi Saxena, MD and Co-Founder, Wonderchef“The Union budget 2022 gives confidence to the business community as it focuses on building strategic strengths rather than taking short term and fiscally deviant populist measures. The FM has avoided giving in to the pressure of the upcoming assembly elections.  Digital inclusiveness for citizens of all classes, increased capital expenditure on infrastructure, push for logistics betterment with continued development of railways and highways, boost to the EV industry with standardised norms for battery swapping, charging and leasing, and easing the compliance burdens are the measures that are essential for business growth in India. One station – One product is an incredibly powerful idea that seems to be getting lost in the din of seeking short-term tax sops. An equally powerful and progressive thought is the formation of National digital health ecosystem which recognises mental health as an area of focus for the first time.  MSME’s will benefit from the ratings programme that’s being rolled out. It will give them better and more fair access to loans and other financial support. Personally is felt most excited by the commitment to invest 25% defence R&D budget with start-ups and academic institutions. This has been a big gap forever in India and is bound to give further impetus to local defence sourcing”.
    6. EV Industry- Mr Abhijeet Sinha, National Program Director of Ease of Doing BusinessAlong awaited step to setup international ‘Arbitration Centre’ in is highly welcomed from Ease of Doing Business point of view to reduce timeframe to resolve ‘Commercial Disputes’ on international pace and competence. This budget brings productivity in various sectors of economy with REFORMS to provide actual Ease like duty concessions for electronics, revoked anti-dumping duty on steel, reduced duty on chemicals etc. It’s equally focused on Structural & Digital Infrastructure both to hold upcoming multi-trillion-dollar economy projections of India Policy on Battery Swapping is being seen was highly needed for standardization of batteries to upgrade ‘Charging’ with ‘Swapping’ facilities to for faster adoption and energy efficient mobility.  Robust expansion of Highways upto 25000 KMS by 2023 with new 100 cargo terminals in next3 years, Budget also envisioned an ultra-modern logistical framework with encouragement to Startups to promoted ‘Drone Shakti’ like ‘Gati Shakti’ for infra to address export. Government clearly intent to harvest recent growth in export during pandemic years by strengthening logistic sector with clear directions to Rail, POST to work together on logistic and also bringing Post Offices on core banking systems by 2022 is masterstroke showing both intent and competence of union government to extend digital infra to include rural and semi urban in export economy.
    7. Healthcare Sector- Anurag Khosla, CEO, vHealth by Aetna India

    I believe announcements around the National Digital Health Ecosystem in the Union Budget 2022 are a positive step towards digitization of health records and making data exchange & analysis easier both for providers as well as patients. If implemented well can certainly lead to efficiencies in diagnosis & treatment. Digital health ecosystem can further improve access to quality yet affordable healthcare for citizens.Further, National Tele Mental Healthcare Program is rare mention in the budget and thus, recognizes importance of mental health in India. Mental wellbeing has been a taboo subject in our country, this digital platform can greatly help mainstreaming mental health alongside physical wellness and will make medical help available to patients at the right time.

    While the aforementioned are positive developments, however, incentives & reforms encouraging investment in technology upgrades in healthcare and increase in overall healthcare public expenditure by the Government can immensely reduce the Out of Pocket healthcare expenses burden on citizens, which is currently one of the highest in the world. I hope the Government recognizes this and evaluates it for future consideration.
    8. Entrepreneur- Vishal Gupta, Co-Founder, Brands2LifeThis digital budget is truly a strategic one which not only envisions strengthening the fundamentals of the country but also steers the economic growth mechanism through a lens of sustainability. The futuristic approach of the government can be attributed to the factors like emphasis on increasing Capital expenditure, Digital inclusiveness, Modernization of Infrastructure, Easing Compliances and Financial empowerment. This further fuels the confidence among the business fraternity to  build an ecosystem that is Robust, Global and Progressive. Thrust on expanding and restructuring the Education through digital penetration manifests the government intent of reaching the under-reached which is eventually going to strengthen the foundation of the country. Unparalleled acknowledgement of Startups and entrepreneurship augurs the unprecedented tailwinds that will facilitate the economy finding the greenshoots. 

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