As the Union Budget 2023-24 approaches, the Indian economy is closely watching the announcements that will be made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on February 1st. The country’s startup sector has high expectations for this year’s budget, as the government has been working towards encouraging the growth of new businesses. The budget will provide relief and benefits to various sectors, and industry players are looking forward to the government’s announcements.
One sector that is eagerly awaiting the budget is the electric vehicle (EV) industry. Gaurav Rathore, Co-founder of EVeez, a pioneer in Electric Mobility as a Service (eMaaS) has high hopes for the EV sector in this year’s budget. He expects the government to introduce a newer and broader FAME III scheme, which will have at least five times the targets of FAME II, and to also include EVs that are currently sold without a battery and that rely on battery swapping networks. This will help accelerate EV adoption, especially by commercial fleet operators and logistics companies. Additionally, Rathore hopes that financing of EVs will be brought under the ambit of Priority Sector Lending (PSL). This will accelerate EV adoption to a larger population, as banks have generally been slow to financing EVs for business and commercial use.
Another sector that is closely watching the budget is the MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) sector. Arjun N, Founder & CEO of SolutionBuggy, India’s largest manufacturing consulting platform, expects the budget to balance global volatility and focus on growth. He hopes that the existing production-linked incentive (PLI) schemes will be extended to manufacturing MSMEs, which will provide a boost to Atmanirbhar Bharat and create jobs. Additionally, he hopes that the Credit Guarantee Scheme for MSMEs will be revamped, providing an easier line of credit which is one of their essential requirements to maintain liquidity for the sector. He also hopes that the compliance costs (regulations/licenses/compliances) will be lowered, especially for Micro enterprises, which will be a small but positive step towards supporting MSMEs.
The textile industry is also closely watching the budget, as Urvisha Panchani, Director of Fabcurate, an online fabrics store, expects the government to relax tax laws and open up more opportunities for foreign investment. This will help boost the textile industry, which is projected to increase at a 10% CAGR by 2025-2026, totaling US$184.44 billion. Additionally, she hopes that the rules governing the export and return of goods will be made simpler to enable SMEs to export their goods smoothly, and that the documentation process will be made more compatible.
Harsh S Kedia, Co-founder of Auburn Digital Solutions, a full-service digital agency, expresses his expectations for the benefits of SEIS export incentives for advertising and tech companies based in India. He believes that the proposed incentives will not only increase service-based exports to global clients, but also promote digital penetration among the masses in the country. Kedia states that these benefits will contribute to the growth of India’s digital economy, leading to the development of a comprehensive Digital Advertising Ecosystem that benefits all stakeholders. He also suggests that the creation of this ecosystem will help to improve policies for e-commerce, fintech, agri-tech, and other tech-based industries. Furthermore, Kedia expects that the creator economy segment will also receive its share of benefits from these incentives.
Mayank Verma, Co-Founder of Leadup Universe, an Executive Education Acceleration Firm, emphasizes the importance of investment in learning technology infrastructure in the upcoming Union budget 2023. He believes that this investment is crucial for ensuring multimodal learning and improving the quality of education and training. Verma also highlights the benefits of using digital technology in the learning process, as it can make quality resources accessible to students regardless of their location or demographic. Additionally, he suggests that reducing GST on learning technology solutions can help make it more affordable across the country, and further increase the deployment and usage of smart classrooms. Overall, Verma advocates for budget allocation to support the use of tools and technologies for digital penetration of advanced learning solutions in 2023.
Overall, the Union Budget 2023-24 is highly anticipated by various sectors of the Indian economy, as they hope for relief and benefits that will help boost their respective industries and create more jobs.