A look at experts' views on Budget 2022

FM Nirmala Sitharaman presented her fourth budget in the parliament on February 1, 2022. Read ahead to know what the experts have to say about it.

A look at experts' views on Budget 2022

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has hailed this year’s Union Budget as being people-friendly and progressive. Rahul Gandhi, on the other hand, termed it a zero-sum budget. Both these conclusions can be deemed accurate, depending on one’s political allegiance. However, we shall rely on expert opinions and reactions for a more impartial take on the budget proposals. Here’s how leading opinion-makers, business heads, and industry watchers reacted to Union Budget 2022:

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  • The Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) has welcomed the extension of the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) and an increase in the guarantee cover. It also welcomed the emphasis on the SMEs involved in the hospitality industry and the mental health initiatives proposed in the budget. 
  • Rating agency Moody’s felt the high capital expenditure plans indicated that the government is expecting strong growth to achieve fiscal consolidation. However, it also pointed out that no significant announcements were made to boost revenue generation other than facilitating schemes like fostering start-ups, enabling parity among cooperatives and state employees and tax simplification.
  • Ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala highlighted a conservative approach in the budget estimates of the net tax revenue. He expects that the net tax revenue could be Rs 3-4 lakh crore higher than the budget estimates. Accordingly, the fiscal deficit could be lower by 1%-1.5% eventually.
  • Biocon honcho Kiran Mazumdar Shaw found the budget well-balanced and welcomed the 35% hike in capital expenditure. She hailed the importance placed on ease of doing business and observed that the fiscal deficit was kept at a tolerable 6.9% of the GDP. She also pointed out the absence of significant stimulus to MSMEs and the services sector that might have helped them cope with the aftermath of the pandemic.

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  • Anil Agarwal, Executive Chairman of Vedanta Resources, also welcomed the focus on ease of doing business and trust-based governance.
  • EaseMyTrip co-founder Rikant Pittie expressed satisfaction with the introduction of the e-passport plans. He felt it will add to the convenience of international travellers and be a boost to the travel industry, which had borne the brunt of the pandemic. He also lauded the extension of ECLGS, which can help out small enterprises within the travel and tourism industry.
  • Osborne Dsouza, Director & CEO of Edufiq, welcomed the educational schemes and initiatives. He praised Digital DESH, the Government’s Digital University initiative, and the ‘One Class, One TV Channel’ through PM eVidya for supplementary education in regional languages. He also appreciated the plan for last-mile fibre optic connectivity in villages.
  • However, Professor Tarun Jain, Associate Professor in Economics, IIM Ahmedabad, felt that PM eVidya is not enough to compensate for the massive education loss of the last two years. Investments towards the improvement of school quality are critical, he observed.

Also Read: Union Budget 2022: What's In Store For Start-Up Owners And Entrepreneurs?

  • The government’s stance on digital currency and digital assets was clarified in the budget, with taxes proposed on the sale of the latter. WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty said that the income tax clarification was a hugely positive step and hoped for further regulations in the sector. He voiced the relief felt among investors as the move quelled any fears of a ban on cryptocurrency.

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