APN News

  • Monday, July, 2022| Today's Market | Current Time: 06:23:05
  • Santosh Kumar, Co-founder & CEO, 21K School

    “The government could focus on working towards strengthening the digital infrastructure in our country, as there has been a leap in the online mode of education, and also help create measures to collectively tackle the issues related to providing education to every region for achieving education to all. Gamification in education will provide an immersive and personalised learning experience to students, which will help in better retention of concepts and easy understanding through 3D visualising for tougher concepts. Virtual education itself can aim in reaching every home, empower students with more choices, enhance digital literacy and make a significant impact on the employment and skilling aspects of their career.”

    Mr. George Alexander Muthoot, MD at Muthoot Finance

    “While we are cognizant of the challenges that the new covid variants are likely to pose, we are hopeful and optimistic that the measures taken by the Government in the upcoming budget will help give fillip to the nascent economic recovery in 2022. Gold Loan NBFCs tend to play a very integral role in supplementing the banking sector, and catering to the underbanked and underserved segment of the society. The reforms introduced by the Government and the RBI so far have majorly aided the revival of the economy and we believe that it will be important to continue offering this support/sops to the most impacted segments during the pandemic, which includes SMEs, MSME, self-employed, small traders, MFI sector along with supporting the housing segment. During the pandemic, gold loan NBFCs have played a crucial role in meeting credit requirements of the self-employed, MSMEs, women borrowers. Gold loan NBFCs do not get the benefit of priority sector lending (PSL) status, even when the loans are given to the priority sector borrowers. Gold loans are extensively used by farmers, micro-entrepreneurs and shopkeepers for seasonal requirements of working capital or other pressing requirements generally not catered to by the banking system. A large proportion of gold loans go to MSMEs for their short-term working capital requirements. Priority sector status will enable gold loan NBFCs to mobilise additional funds from Banks for on-lending to weaker sections.

    We are also in tandem with the recent industry discussions with the honourable Finance Minister regarding setting up a dedicated refinance window for the NBFC sector and making banks’ lending to NBFCs under priority sector be given a ‘permanent’ status in the upcoming budget. An increase in the limits of total priority sector lending by banks would also help the overall sector as it will ensure liquidity support. Since the credit and gold loan demand in the country has also indicated revival signs, we expect recapitalisation of public sector banks to improve their lending capacity and alignment of single exposure limit for banks’ exposure to gold loan NBFCs with that of other NBFCs for greater liquidity flows for taking further exposure towards gold loan NBFCs.”

    Mr. Umesh Revankar, Vice Chairman & MD   Shriram Transport Finance

    “While each wave of the pandemic has brought forth its own set of challenges, we are hopeful and optimistic that the measures taken by the Government in the upcoming budget will help boost the economic recovery in 2022. Considering the slowdown caused by COVID outbreak in India in the past two years, it becomes crucial for the government to prioritize its reforms towards MSMEs and SMEs which have been one of the most impacted sectors and thus enable them to stay afloat in 2022-23. The MSMEs are responsible for the creation of more than half of the employment opportunities in the country. We believe that facilitating concession in GST rates from 18% to 12%, tax free export income and subsidized interest rates will aid the sector and also empower them to compete in international markets. Regarding RBI’s recent clarification on stamping NPA (non-performing assets) on their due date, we think that the government should take a more relaxed approach to enable SMEs to get back to business rather than tightening norms now. 

    Over the next couple of quarters, we envisage that as the economy starts to recover we will see demand revival. We expect the Government to continue to spend on Infra and as the Government spending on developing infrastructure picks up, we expect this will lead to pick up in CV demand in the upcoming quarters. We also seek maximum allocation of infrastructure funds assigned in the ‘Gati Shakti Initiative’ launched by the honorable Prime Minister which will enable NBFCs to achieve our ‘Make in India’ plans. This increase in government expenditure on infrastructure will lead to a surge in credit demand that will further enable NBFCs to flourish and impact the overall economy. 

    One of the other areas we are expecting in the FY23 Budget is initiatives around expansion in availability of CNG and CNG stations across the country. Although the government has envisioned a noble cause by introducing clean fuel norms that has seen interest from people shifting to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG), however the inability to establish the required number of stations are leaving the vehicle owners in the lurch. Increased investments towards easy accessibility of CNG and CNG stations will positively impact the demand for new vehicles.”

    Srikanth Kandikonda, CFO, ManipalCigna

     “Health insurance penetration in India is abysmally low, and what cannot be glossed over is that every year millions of people in our country are pushed below the poverty line because of the burden of out-of-pocket healthcare expenses.

    Access to health insurance can help more people become part of the health care system and get quality treatment. Thus, we are hopeful in the upcoming Union budget 2022-23 the government looks at considering 5% GST tax slab on health insurance premium along with commodities such as food items to make it more affordable for the people living in the middle-income group to get access to quality healthcare care they need. As people age, many elders may need to cope with some or the other health conditions and would need protection against any untoward hospitalization expenses on account of large number of diseases including critical illnesses. Here’s where, GST rate cut from 18% to 5% on the health insurance premiums will be a huge respite especially for senior citizens who are struggling to meet the rising healthcare costs.  At present, on most insurance products the GST is 18% which thrusts the premium to 118% for the end-user. The abolition or at least a sizeable reduction in the GST on all personal lines of products – from the existing 18% to 5% will encourage more people to buy health insurance.

    Further, the increase in the limit of tax deduction in 80D can help boost the overall health insurance penetration in the country. Currently, under 80D, an individual can claim up to Rs.25000 deduction for self and family, this limit should be increased substantially. It is a fact that one major illness in the family can drain entire savings, and can push the family into a debt trap. Thus, in today’s world of growing medical inflation, lifestyle disease and also infectious diseases like Covid, having a comprehensive and high sum insured health insurance policy has become a necessity to access quality treatment without worrying about medical expenses. Therefore, in the budget ahead we expect the government to announce initiatives to increase the limit for health cover under section 80D and GST rate cut, to help millions of people access quality healthcare at an affordable cost.”

    Muralidharan Srinivasan, Head of Payments, APMEA Region, FIS

     ‘“We expect the Union Budget 2022 to further layout concrete measure for expanding digital infrastructure in the country that will lead to speedy transactions, and will encourage Fintech companies to create new digital offerings for people. In order to achieve greater financial inclusion, tax incentives to merchants/ companies who are empowering people with digital onboarding and payments in Tier II / III cities and rural India can be offered which can be a key driver. We expect significant policies to be announced that may lead to increase in large-scale penetration of credit instruments in Tier II / III cities and rural India, and spur demand in the economy. We firmly believe that substantial improvement in digital infrastructure and advanced payment technology will eventually help in building a cash-free economy.”

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