|HOME | BUSINESS | BUDGET 99 | CHAT TRANSCRIPT|
February 27, 1999
'It has addressed all the right issues'
I think this Budget is encouraging. It has addressed all the right issues, like increasing agricultural output, increasing the involvement of village councils in rural spending, thereby strengthening democracy, and proposing a phenomenal cut in fiscal deficit for the coming year from 6.4 per cent to 4.5 per cent of the GDP. It suggests reforms and good fiscal measures to help the capital markets.
Industry should feel reasonably satisfied because there is rationalisation of customs and excise duty rates. And while some specific cases may have to be looked at, overall all the other features will help boost housing, agriculture and continue with financial sector reforms. All of this should have a positive effect on industry.
The more I look at the Budget, the more I feel it is positive. I am disappointed at the insufficient measures taken to downsize the central government. To announce that only posts of four secretaries will be reduced is a very meagre beginning.
I doubt if too much of this Budget will be changed in the coming months if the finance minister is particularly sensitive about being termed as one who makes such changes. In fact, there is nothing one could object to in making changes, but we should expect that there should be marginal changes made to help industry and society.
Many infrastructure incentives were already announced earlier and most of these projects were open to 100 per cent foreign direct investment. The tax holiday has been increased to 10 years. One of the most encouraging aspects has been the plan to bring gold into the system.
Rajesh Shah, managing director, Mukand Iron and Steel, is president, CII.
|Tell us what you think of this Budget report|
BOOK SHOP | MUSIC SHOP | HOTEL RESERVATIONS | WORLD CUP 99
EDUCATION | PERSONAL HOMEPAGES | FREE EMAIL | FEEDBACK