Indian Chamber of Commerce 'hails' Interim Budget 2024

Business Thursday 01/February/2024 19:38 PM
Indian Chamber of Commerce 'hails' Interim Budget 2024

Guwahati: The Indian Chamber of Commerce- North East Initiative 'hailed' the Union Budget today presented by the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Mahesh Kumar Saharia, Chairman of the ICC, North Eastern Region, said that the budget has been very inclusive, "taking all categories of citizens along with all the basic economic parameters."

"The Finance Minister specifically mentioned in her budget speech that the development of the eastern part of India is a priority for the Government of India. This perspective of the government of India will boost new economic activities and opportunities for the northeast," Saharia said.

He further said that the government has steadfastly focused on promoting inclusivity and "guaranteeing sufficient living accommodations for everyone."

"The latest announcement about the construction of an extra twenty million houses through the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana--Gramin underscores the commitment to broadening affordable housing opportunities in rural areas. This deliberate step not only tackles the housing requirements of rural communities but also propels growth in the housing sector within these regions," Saharia said.

He further said that, in a major initiative, the government will help "deserving" sections of the middle class build their own houses.

Sarat Kumar Jain , Chairman of Assam & Meghalaya Chapter of Indian Chamber of Commerce said, "The revised fiscal deficit -- the gap between government's revenue and expenses -- is at 5.8 per cent of the GDP for Financial Year 24 (FY24). Fiscal deficit in FY25 is expected to be 5.1 per cent of GDP. The number of tax filers swelled by 2.4 times. The direct tax collection has trebled since 2014. In 2024-25, the tax receipts are projected at Rs 26.02 lakh crore. A corpus of Rs 1 lakh crore will be established with 50-year interest free loan provided. The corpus will provide long term financing and re-financing with long tenures at low or nil interest rates. This will encourage the private sector to scale up research and innovation significantly in sunrise domains."

The interim budget, tabled today, will take care of the financial needs of the intervening period until a government is formed after the Lok Sabha polls after which a full budget will be presented by the new government in July.

With this Budget Presentation, Sitharaman equalled the record set by former Prime Minister Morarji Desai, who as finance minister, presented five annual budgets and one interim budget between 1959 and 1964.

The Indian economy is projected to grow close to 7 per cent in the financial year 2024-25 which starts this April, said the Ministry of Finance in a review report.

India's economy grew 7.2 per cent in 2022-23 and 8.7 per cent in 2021-22. The Indian economy is expected to grow 7.3 per cent in the current financial year 2023-24, remaining the fastest-growing major economy.