Citizens\' expectations of the budget

Update: 2023-01-31 19:01 GMT
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman during the final touches of Union Budget 2023-24, at Finance Ministry in New Delhi, Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2023. (PTI Photo/Manvender Vashist Lav)

With Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman all set to present the Budget on Wednesday, experts speak of their expectations.

I have two main expectations — firstly, the fiscal deficit number should be 6.4 per cent of the GDP or less, because the more the government borrows, less is available for the private sector. It was a good idea during Covid but not anymore. Secondly, I expect an increase in spending on capital expenditure rather than revenue expenditure.

Prof. Prasanna Tantri, Associate professor, finance, Indian School of Business

Inflation is sticky and making it difficult for salaried employees and the middle class, hence revision in the limits of basic exemption, Section 80C, Section 24 for principal and interest rebates can be expected. I am expecting the government to provide access to credit and loans at lower interest rates for women-led businesses to help them compete on an equal footing with their male counterparts. With India preparing to increase its spending towards the public health expenditure sector to 2.5 per cent of GDP by 2025, this sector can see a record increase.

Shubhraa Maheshwari, chairperson, FICCI Ladies Organisation (FLO)

On the business front, I am anticipating compensation to oil retailers for selling fuel below market prices as the fluctuation in prices throughout the year has been volatile. As a consumer, I am expecting the duties on electric vehicles to be lowered so that manufacturers can pass on the benefit to us and we can truly move forward on all fronts towards a greener future.

Nabhan Mahmood, real estate businessman

Our recommendations to the ministry of finance include incentivising health seeking behaviour, promoting healthcare infrastructure and capacity building, simplifying the GST for healthcare services, strengthening the initiative to increase and improve medical value tourism (MVT) and developing the healthcare workforce.

Dr K. Hari Prasad, President, Apollo Group

We hope to see a sustained commitment to the evolving digital technology landscape, especially for AI and AI-powered solutions like virtual assistants and ChatGPT, as we have seen huge traction worldwide and in India. We expect to see some effective and simplified policies and regulations favourable to innovative tech start-ups and enterprises supporting tech startups to propel innovation in large customer-centric sectors like banking, healthcare, retail, agriculture, manufacturing, and government sectors.

Raj Koneru, CEO,

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