The Budget 2014-15
The budget can be a joy to behold. The good part here, is that the Finance Minister has not made exaggeratedly hopeful projections, and, therefore, the scope for disappointment could be reduced.
- Bank loans for the infra sector to be exempt from CRR and SLR. This should reduce the cost of funds for these companies, and hopefully will boost the infrastructure.
- Financial Year 2015 fiscal deficit targeted at 4.1 percent, FY16 at 3.6 percent.
- Foreign institutional investors’ capital gains to be taxed, and not business income.
- Tax-pass through allowed for real estate, infrastructure investment trusts to avoid double taxation.
- Power plants are going operational in March 2015 to get adequate coal supply.
- Tax holiday for power generation companies extended till 2017.
- Subsidy expenses estimated at Rs 2.5 Lakh Crore, almost the same as in the interim Budget.
- FDI in the insurance sector insurance from 26% to 49%.
- I-T exemption limit hiked to Rs 2.5 lakh for those below 60 years and up to Rs 3 lakh for senior citizens.
- Divestment targets not very aggressive at Rs 43,425 crore. This means that the government is not relying heavily on divestment to bridge fiscal deficit.
- Budgetary provision for Pooled Municipal Debt Obligation enhanced from Rs 5000 crores to Rs 50,000 crores to promote and finance infrastructure projects in urban areas on shared risk basis.
- No move to repeal retrospective tax amendments
- No clear plan to reduce subsidies.
- No clear plan to recapitalize PSU banks or tackle the NPA problem
- No reduction in gold import duty.
- No clear timeline for implementation of GST
- No mention of GAAR
- Rs.200 crores set for Sardar Patel’s Statue.
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