Mr. Masood Mallick, CEO, Re Sustainability Limited (ReSL) on Green growth approach proposed in Union Budget 2023.
“India’s COP26 commitments have received a major boost from a set of unprecedented ‘Green Growth’ elements proposed in Union Budget 2023.
The initiatives proposed directly align with the goals pledged by our Hon’ble Prime Minister at the Summit and this is probably the most significant step we have taken as a nation toward the mainstreaming of a climate–responsive agenda. As a result of this budget, we should see significant progress in our energy transition journey including, but not limited to, scaling up of bio-energy/ CBG and Green Hydrogen. In addition, a number of fiscal support measures have been announced for other critical Green Economy elements. Unprecedented measures to enhance natural capital creation, including biodiversity, sustainable farming, afforestation, eco-tourism, carbon stock management and sustainable agriculture, have also found a space in this budget.
In summary, today, the sustainability sector has much to celebrate. Sustainability has clearly taken center stage in the government’s development agenda, possibly for the very first time.”
Attributed to Mr. Jeetender Sharma, Managing Director & Founder, Okinawa Autotech
“Okinawa Autotech welcomes the government’s focus on sustainable growth under the spirit of Amrit Kaal. The elaborate focus on capital expenditure, infrastructure development, green growth, rural development health, education and skilling will support the nation to play a dominant role in the new world. We compliment Finance Minister for providing a big boost to green mobility. The exemption on custom duties on the import of capital goods and machinery required for the manufacture of lithium-ion cells will lead to faster adoption of electric vehicles in the country. This will further aid the development of an efficient EV ecosystem. Further, the push for the scrappage policy will support the overall growth of the entire automobile sector. The budget outlays the strong foundation for India’s long-term vision under ‘panchamrit’ and net-zero carbon emission goals for 2070 to usher in a green industrial and economic transition. We also believe that the relief in personal income tax will improve the consumer confidence & purchasing power in the country.”
Union Budget 2023 -24 – Reaction from Dr Silpi Sahoo, Chairperson, SAI International Education Group for Education Sector
The Union Budget of 2023 has been a major step forward in terms of educational reforms in India & escalating the country onto a world class educational hub.
1.The government has allocated a substantial funding of 1,12,898 crore for the Ministry of Education, the highest ever allocation towards the education sector. Allocation for school education has increased by 8 percent from Rs 63,449 crore (Budget Estimate) in 2022-23 to Rs 68,804 crore in 2023-24. Further, higher education has received Rs 44,094 crore in 2023-24, an increase of 7.9 percent from Rs 40,828 crore (Budget Estimate) in 2022-23. The NEP is based on five essential pillars, Access, Affordability, Equity, Quality and Accountability. A greater inflow of money into the education sector will contributing towards strengthening all five of these fundamentals.
2.Contributions towards the expansion & improvement of school infrastructure, increasing the quality of higher education, increasing access to technology, and expanding research and innovation. It is only with better digital infrastructure & quality education, that can improve the accessibility to skill development across India, especially in lower-tier cities and rural areas.
3.The budget has promptly addressed the gender gap in access to education with setting aside about 5% of the total expenditure allocated towards issues affecting women in the gender budget, providing equitable access to education for girls. It not only brings the importance of equality in education to the forefront but seeks to make it a reality. When children of both sexes and all sections of the society get education under a single roof, achieving equity in education takes the shape of being real.
4.With one of the prominent focuses this year being job creation for youth in India (Amrit Kal) to foster entrepreneurship, the budget also provides for a massive expansion of scholarships and fellowships through centres of excellence, as well as funding for teacher training & development & introduction of digital libraries. To spur a culture of entrepreneurship & innovation among the youth, maximizing their placement success rates through quality student-centric experiential learning. Teachers’ training re-envisioned through innovative pedagogy, to upskill teachers & address the learning gap in a technology driven education ecosystem.
5. Bringing forth a framework of constant upskilling via Mission Karma Yogi and increasing digitalisation as the new age learning form, impetus has been paid to financial literacy & multidisciplinary learning for medical tech. This will ensure the availability of skilled manpower for futuristic medical technologies and research
6.The National Book Trust to further inculcate the habit of reading is a promising endeavour this year. To build a culture of reading & facilitate the availability of quality books across geographies, languages, genres and levels and device-agnostic accessibility
Overall, Budget 2023 has made some great strides to uplift the educational system of the country.
Mr. Madhavan Menon, Chairman & Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Limited
“The proposal in the Union Budget 2023, to increase the rate of TCS from 5 to 20 per cent for purchase of overseas tours & overseas remittances other than education will significantly increase the upfront cash outflow for end customers. It will drive more of these customers to use alternate channels that are outside the domestic tax net. We urge the Government to reconsider this.
On the positive side:
- Income tax rebates announced in the budget will result in an increase of disposable incomes which is welcome.
- Tourism promotion being taken up on a “mission mode”- with active participation of states, public-private partnerships and convergence of government programs will drive domestic tourism growth.
- Strong infrastructural focus in the announcement of 50 new airports, heliports, water aerodromes and revival of advanced landing grounds will enhance regional access and connectivity.
- Financial support via loans to be provided to states for developing enhanced road and rail connectivity will help uplift of the domestic tourism sector.
- The selection of 50 destinations to be developed as holistic tourism packages – combined with the focus on local level tourism & the promotion and sale of GI products & handicrafts will give a boost to local arts and artisans.”
FY’24: A smart budget in challenging times
Given the challenging macro backdrop of slowing global growth and tightened financial conditions, Finance Minister has aptly prioritized growth.
I welcome the move to more productive expenditure, budgeting capital spending of Rs 10 lakh crore—a 33% increase over the previous year and the highest in the past two decades as a share of GDP. At the same time, the revision of income tax slabs under the new tax regime should increase purchasing power for many. Loan guarantees and other assistance toward MSMEs, a focus on tourism, and measures announced for the care economy (like new nursing colleges) will boost job creation. The budget also remains committed to shared prosperity by extending the free food scheme for one more year.
This budget shows not only the kind of policy support that is necessary for the economy at this moment but also strengthens the strategic foundations for our long-term growth. We are witnessing three major transformations globally: rapid digital adoption, the rebalancing of supply chains, and environmental sustainability. This budget helps position India to play a leading role in all three transformations
– N Chandrasekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons
“The FMCG industry has exhibited a healthy recovery despite global inflation and economic slowdown during the past two years. With the budget estimating India’s growth at a rate of 7 per cent in FY 2023, this first budget in Amrit Kaal focuses on creating ample opportunities for Indians, especially the youth, and provides a strong impetus to the country’s growth. The proposed exemptions in personal income tax and incentives for skill development are expected to boost consumer sentiment thereby generating demand and spurring consumption. This coupled with the government’s focus on India’s green growth strategy will catalyse our journey to become a more self-reliant nation.”
Mr. Vishal Suri, Managing Director, SOTC Travel Limited.
The Union Budget 2023-24 presented by Hon’ble Finance Minister provides a positive focus on infrastructural development/investment, digital enhancements, sustainability, agriculture, domestic tourism. We appreciate the Government’s plan of continued focus on domestic tourism, railways, new airports, heliports, water aerodromes that will improve regional connectivity and be one of the key drivers of the domestic tourism sector.
Further the announcement on the launch of an app to enhance domestic tourism experience reiterates our country’s focus on digitization. The ‘Dekho Apna Desh’ initiative focusing on sector specific skilling and entrepreneurship development while the facilitation of tourism infrastructure under the Vibrant Villages Programme, and setting up a ‘Unity Mall’ in state capitals/ popular tourist destinations to promote ‘One District, One product’ for GI products and other handicrafts will strongly support domestic tourism.
The travel & tourism industry supports one in 10 jobs and provides livelihoods for a significant number of people, therefore the Government’s support on prioritizing tourism with active participation from local authorities, sustainable practices and encouraging public-private partnerships is a positive pivot towards revival/road to recovery.
However this Union Budget did not provide the travel & tourism industry the respite we anticipated with respect to rationalization of taxes. Instead the proposals increased TCS on outbound travel and other LRS transactions from 5% to 20% without any threshold exemption. In our view, such high rates of taxation are an added liability to outbound travelers and negatively impacts tour operators recovering from the pandemic. We request the Government to reconsider this proposal.
We also hoped this budget would offer elimination of the 5 crore capping for the SEIS benefit and incentives to Corporates for organizing meetings and conference in India through partial or full tax exemptions.
Mr. Mr. Vaidyanathan V.
“We welcome the measures announced by the Finance Minister in the Union Budget 2023. Setting up of the National Digital Library for children and adolescents will up their knowledge and prepare them for competition at a global level. Emphasis on physical libraries at panchayat and ward levels will make knowledge accessible to children in rural areas and will also open doors for their development. We laud the government’s efforts to come up with three centers of excellence for Artificial Intelligence which are to be set up in top educational institutions. The government’s efforts to recruit more teachers for 740 Eklavya Model Residential Schools is appreciated. However, it is a disappointment that there were no specific announcements for the higher education sector. Research in the higher education sector needs the government’s support which in turn can act as a catalyst for India’s growth. We hope the government opens channels for collaborative working with private institutions as well, to create global managers”, said Vaidyanathan V, CFO, Great Lakes Institute of Management.