The Union Budget for 2020 was released by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on the 1st of February. This year’s budget is crucial. The country is struggling from a prolonged slowdown that has effects across sectors. India Inc. has put its hopes on the ‘aspirational’ budget 2020 presented by the FM, and this his how it reacts to the roadmap for development.
Union Budget 2020 — India Inc. Reacts
Dr. Pulkit Mathur, CEO, Queppelin
“It was heartening to see FM Sitharaman recognize the importance of Deep Tech is driving the next wave of growth in India. From AI in Ayushman Bharat to Data Centre Parks to allocation of Quantum Tech….there was enough in that Budget for the Technology sector to be enthused about.”
Archit Gupta, Founder, and CEO, ClearTax
Firstly the deferment of ESOP taxation at the time of exercise is a very welcome move. This will help motivate and hire high-quality resources.
The amendment to section 80IAC on relief to startups is lacklustre. This section has several conditions that need to be fulfilled and a lot of approvals built into it as eligibility criteria. The government needs to relax this more.
Srikanth Iyer, CEO & Founder, HomeLane.com
Entrepreneurship is indeed the spirit of India! It is a delight that the Government has considered to encourage start-up owners and entrepreneurs by creating more opportunities, to help towards the clearance cell of investment.
The focus on technology including AI/ML, robotics with number of productive age group cross-cutting streams in India is another exciting development. Further, the Government’s efforts to boost income and purchasing power, reflects well on the income tax.
Akhand Swaroop Pandit, CEO & Founder, Catalyst Group
This budget states about the new education policy (NEP), which will be announced soon and this time the focus will be on attracting experienced and qualified teachers & Education sector needs greater finance to attract good teachers and thus ECBs and FDI will be leveraged.
A total of 150 higher education institutes will have apprenticeship programmes by March 2021. Urban local bodies will provide fresh engineers a job opportunity for one year, says FM. This will help engineers learn on the job which is actually good because in India a major population of engineers lack the skills required for growth which will be tackled here.
By 2030, India is set to have the largest working-age population in the world. It is good to know the Government has acknowledged this and the need for the education sector to have greater finance to attract good teachers.
Amol Arora, Vice Chairman & MD, Shemford Group of Futuristic Schools
In the previous Union Budget, the Government allocated ₹94,800 crore towards the education fund. This time the Finance Minister has announced Rs 99,300 crore outlay for education sector and Rs 3,000 crore for skill development. But I feel the rise is just not enough to match the current need.
Harsh Jain, Co-founder and COO, Groww
Making policy for data centre parks for digital resources like fintech, AI, aggregator platforms along with the connection of 1 lakh villages via optical fibre internet is great news for digital India. This will definitely increase digital penetration into India that was unthinkable before.
Suman Reddy Eadunuri, MD, Pegasystems India
The government’s decision to announce measures through the three themes – Aspirational India, Economic Development and Caring Society covers the aspirations of all.
The implementation of a policy to build data centre parks throughout the country is another welcome move which will help immensely in data management. As the 5th largest economy of the world with a vibrant startup ecosystem, the announcement to create more opportunities for entrepreneurs and setting up of an Investment Clearance Cell which will offer assistance in funding will boost the industry.
India’s plan to invest Rs 8,000 crore (~$1.12 billion) over the next five years in the National Mission on Quantum Technologies (NMQT) is a step in the right direction which will augment the industries dependent on these future technologies. India’s plan to come up with five new smart cities further solidifies its stance of a sustainable and citizen-centric future which I am sure will elevate the quality of life.
Rajiv Kapoor, Vice President, India & SAARC, Cambium Networks
The Union Budget provides a major boost to the interests of broadband services enablers and aligned stakeholders as one of the major takeaways that evidently emerged was the fact of connectivity being at the core of all key pursuits planned by the government.
Towards this, initiatives announced such as providing push to smart metering, setting up five new smart cities, establishing new data centres across the country and more importantly the allocation of Rs.6000 crore towards BharatNet to provide connectivity to 100,000 ‘gram panchayats’ within this year itself, augers well for the telecom industry.
Dr. Keshab Panda, CEO and MD, L&T Technology Services
From a perspective of the engineering and technology services industry that thrives on innovation, the government’s move to re-revitalize the IP filing and protection process is a welcome step.
Overall, the budget puts the role of technology in limelight spanning across all the three focus areas as announced by the government namely aspirational India, economic development and a caring society.
Tim Nicolle, Founder, PrimaDollar
The Finance Minister’s announcements under Union Budget 2020 introducing new schemes will help the small players in the export sector in a big way. The new Nirvik scheme introduces high insurance cover for exporters at a reduced premium. Simplified processes for faster claim settlements will be beneficial for both the exporters and the general insurers. It will lead to providing high insurance cover, reduction in premium for small exporters and simplified procedures for claim settlements, this will encourage export finance. This will boost exports.
Meghna Suryakumar, Founder & CEO, Crediwatch
The focus on enabling growth for MSMEs in today’s Union Budget is encouraging. Enabling NBFCs to extend invoice financing to MSMEs through TReDS, should enhance the opportunity to fuel the Indian economy and widen the acceptability and trust by the BFSI sector.
The extension of GEM e-marketplace as a unified procurement channel should bring more vendors (from the current 3.2 lac) onto the platform. Additionally, amendments to Factor Regulation Act 2011 should boost the MSME sector.
Sandipan Mitra, Founder, Hungerbox
India has embraced the shared economy and welcomed the digital revolution with open arms. The Union Budget provides some important benefits for emerging entrepreneurs.
With the corporate tax being slashed to 22%, companies can now have a little more room to breathe and benefit from the assistance in funding through the investment clearance cell that has been proposed. This budget has certainly addressed some challenges that were faced by budding start-ups and has made it easier for them to receive funding from investors.
Ankur Choudhary, Co-Founder & CIO, Goalwise.com
On the personal finance front, the 2020 budget has not lived up to the expectations of the taxpayers. While increasing the insurance cover for bank depositors from 1 lakh to 5 lakhs is a positive and much-awaited step but on the income tax side, it has been a disappointment.
Although a new tax regime with lower tax rates has been introduced, the removal of all exemptions including even 80C exemptions, will water down its benefits. On top of it, the option to choose the old or the new income tax regime will just complicate filing income tax returns which was already a complicated process for individual taxpayers.
Rohan Parikh, Director, The Green Acres Academy
As a country gearing up to have the largest ‘working population’ in the age group of 15 to 65 years of age by 2030, the Budget 2020 has adequately focused on building a robust structure to drive higher education and skill development.
From creating an efficient workforce of engineers, doctors, bio-medics and IT professionals to nurturing skill-based qualities for entrepreneurs, sales and marketing professionals or commercial fine arts etc., the budget has taken into consideration the inclination of the youth and aligned it to the economic growth targets, thereby strengthening the role of education in building the $5 Trillion economy.
Indroneel Dutt, CFO, Cleartrip
The government has backed its vision to turn India into one of the world’s top tourism hubs by allocating INR 2,500 crore for promoting tourism in general and setting aside a sum of INR 3100 crore for the Culture Ministry to boost regional tourism.
What would be wonderful is to have an empowered nodal body comprising of the Govt / OTA / airline, hotel and other industry representatives with the objective of promoting discoverability, ease of booking and fulfilment of our cultural, natural and heritage sites.
Sandeep Bhambure, VP and MD, India & SAARC, Veeam Software
The government’s announcement of setting up a policy to build data centre parks throughout India for digital connectivity and the allocation of Rs 6,000 crores for BharatNet is a big step towards a successful Digital India initiative.
This will increase the adoption of technologies such as IoT, Analytics and AI; leading to an unprecedented amount of data generation. Data management and protection will play a key role to safeguard the citizen’s data from cyber-breaches. Additionally, the implementation of intelligent data management platforms will help achieve positive outcomes from the data.
Arjun Raj Kher, Brand Head, Hitchki and Bayroute
The much-awaited union budget of India will be presented soon by the Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharam at the Parliament. The hospitality industry is one of the fastest-growing sector in India and it has the potential to expand if we have a higher budgetary allocation.
Industry stalwarts are looking at a reduced Goods and Services Tax (GST) which will boost the business and will also strengthen the current fiscal system. The restaurant industry has regained growth over the last couple of years and is now hopeful from our Government to fast track several important reforms and make the most in this sector.
Sunny Nandwani, Founder, Managing Partner, Acuver
The Budget 2020 by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman claims to have provided an annual benefit of Rs 1 lakh crore on account of GST where every average household saves monthly 4% on account of reduced GST. This improves the consumption and saving for each individual.
In a bid to brand the technological sector, budget 2020 will prove to be an incentive for foreign investors. Addressing the retail sector specifically, the National Logistics Policy will now advance towards making MSMEs more competitive as the policy will be released soon.
Nikhil Barshikar, Founder and Managing Director, Imarticus
With an increase in the allocation of funds from 94,800 cr last year to 99300 this year, the government continues to invest more in the education sector to infuse growth in the country. Addressing the severe skill shortage that businesses across India are facing at present, focus on skill development will lead to progress in the nation.
We are also very affirmative with regards to the new education policy that will ensure quality education to students. Also, the introduction of degree-level full-fledged online education will empower the disadvantaged sections of the society in acquiring employable skills and for upskilling.
Aditya Agarwal, Co-Founder, Wealthy
As a member of the startup community in India, it is exciting and welcome to hear our Finance Minister recognize startups as a bedrock of the economy and to acknowledge our role in job and wealth creation. It is commendable that ESOPs will only be taxed on liquidation as opposed to exercise.
This will serve as a lucrative incentive that helps attract and retain talent in our space. The move to remove DDT is another great proposal as it will make Indian equities more appealing for investors and also encourage FDIs. We are confident that these measures will lead to a boost in investments and consequentially quicken the economy.
Basavaraj Puttappa, Founder and CEO, Zeva Astras
As per our expectations, the Budget 2020 has proposed a slew of measures to propel the economy towards growth. The government’s sustained push for tech innovation and entrepreneurship is encouraging from a market perspective.
The Budget has particularly proposed a conducive environment for the start-up sector in India and these measures are sure to cement India’s position as a hotbed of startups.
The market also stands to gain from the revised Income Tax structure as it indicates a higher disposable income in the hands of the common man. This could prove to be positive in terms of investments and could potentially boost the capital market.
Sharad Sanghi, MD & CEO, NTT-Netmagic
“As India’s leading data centre services provider, we welcome the government’s proposal to roll out a policy enabling the private sector to build datacenter parks throughout the country. This move rightly acknowledges how integral data is to every sector of the economy at a very opportune time. Government initiatives like Smart Cities and Digital India, policies around data localization and the digitization of various industries such as financial services, e-commerce, media, and the manufacturing sector have fuelled the demand for the data centre industry in India. We at NTT – Netmagic currently operate nine data centres in the country and have plans to double our data centre capacity in the coming months to meet the growing demand.
The budget has also given a massive push to the digital economy recognizing how AI, IoT, 3D printing, drones, data storage, and quantum computing, etc., are all re-writing the world economic order. Overall, the budget is pro-startups and forward-looking in terms of growth across technology sectors.”