Plan and Policy

Plan & Policy

Tax collections trending up: Secy

Revenue secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey (in pic) said tax collections have increased in the last three years, thanks to demonetisation and various tax reform measures.

In a post-Budget interview to Financial Chronicle, Pandey said, "First, the tax grew by 15 per cent, then 18 per cent, this year it has grown by 20 per cent and in FY20 we have kept direct tax collection growth at 15 per cent. The GDP growth in nominal terms has been about 11 per cent. So, the tax buoyancy has ranged from 1.5 to touching nearly 2. This is a good trend.”

Govt open to raising cash dole to farmers

Facing the opposition onslaught over the direct income support of Rs 6,000 offered to the small farmers in the interim budget, the government is reportedly weighing the idea of increasing the dole to a more meaningful level.

Sources said the cash dole, now coming to Rs 500 a month or ‘Rs 17 a day’ as ridiculed by Congress president Rahul Gandhi, could be increased in the future, as the government's resources grow. Moreover, states can also top up this amount with their own income support schemes.

Fiscal deficit deviation is not worthy of notice: Garg

Confident of its prudent fiscal management, finance ministry is looking to end FY19 with its targeted 3.3 per cent fiscal deficit while countering the relentless criticism on the quantum of direct income support to the a farmers, asserting that the Rs 6,000 offered is an addition to the existing schemes and should not be seen in isolation.

Need support to accelerate MSME growth

Being an election year, more like a vote-on-account, will certainly restrain the Finance Minister in preparing and presenting the Budget. A lower than expected GST mop up and disinvestment revenue combined with effects of reduced GDP growth than projected may widen the fiscal deficit for the ongoing year to almost 3.5%. The Government borrowings is likely to have exceeded the original budget with project overruns, higher subsidies, bank recapitalisation needs arising out of the ballooning NPAs as well as the impact of seventh pay commission and OROP implementation.

Expecting pay-back

The Budget today is an eagerly awaited event. It is one of the biggest financial events in the country, curated by the Government and presented as a statement of intent, that is eagerly looked forward to. Even though the Budget is not an event, but really a journey, Budget day is big day. And today is that day!

On the eve and maybe the morn of the Budget, just before it is presented, every Tom, Dick and Harish will want to take a potshot at predicting what needs to be there, and make ones own statement of intent laid out. Here I go with my own two bit.

Auto industry needs bigger growth

The auto industry in India has been a star performer and has been growing consistently over the years. The industry is on the brink of a major revolution dotted with challenges and we need to tackle those head on to script a bigger and sustainable growth story for one of the fastest growing major global auto markets Our regulatory environment has been transitioning over the past few years. We have been bracing ourselves with the roll-out of regulatory / policy changes like leapfrog to BS VI, Café norms, Safety requirements to align the auto sector with the global trends.

E-pharmacy Medlife acquires Medlabz

Medlife International, India’s leading e-pharmacy company with about 30 per cent market share, announced its acquisition of Medlabz, a Mumbai based digital healthcare platform and ‘Diagnostics at home’ services company. With this acquisition Medlife will consolidate its diagnostics business by integrating its technology platform and logistics strengths of both companies.

Thermax opens new factory to make chillers, heat pumps

Thermax, energy and environment solutions major, on Thursday opened its new factory at Sri City in Andhra Pradesh to produce a range of of vapour absorption machines comprising chillers and heat pumps and heaters.

It would cater to both the local and overseas markets to generate more sales revenues for the firm.

The Pune-headquartered company, which has invested Rs 166 crore in the first phase, said it has created nearly 300 jobs at the factory.

Gold demand marginally down in 2018

India’s gold demand for 2018 was marginally do­wn at 760.4 tonnes in 2018 against 771.2 tonnes in the previous year. Both je­w­ellery and investment dem­and were down in 2018 as well as in Q4 of the calendar year. 

Jewellery demand in In­d­ia for 2018 was down by one per cent at 598 tonnes as compared to 601.9 ton­n­es in 2017 and the investment demand was down by 4 per cent at 162.4 tonnes against 169.3 tonnes in the previous year.

Central bank gold buying at highest level since 1970s

Net purchases of gold by different central banks in 2018 touched the highest level since fiat currencies came into being in 1970s. Central bank net purchases in 2018 were 74 per cent higher than 2017.

In 2018, the banks made a net purchase of 651.5 tonnes against 374.8 tonnes in 2017. With this, banks and global financial institutions hold nearly 34,000 tonnes of gold, as per the data from World Gold Council.