The industry has positively responded to Budget 2019-2020 presented by finance minister Nirmala Sitaraman.
Sanjay Gupta, Vice President and India country manager, NXP: We welcome the government’s move to lower GST rate from 12% to 5% for purchase of electric vehicles and the vision to make India as the global manufacturing hub. The push for FAME II by providing the right incentives can encourage a faster conversion rate. Semi-conductors and host of other components will be vital in developing the EV ecosystem in the country and as NXP, we will play a vital role to foster this goal. Initiatives such as complete elimination of customs duty on some EV components could prove to be a gamechanger for the auto-industry.
Dr. Omkar Rai, Director General, STPI: Government focus on aggregating the services of key sectors such as infrastructure, energy, developing model for public-private partnership intending towards lot of collaborations by way of leveraging emerging technologies, FDI, ease of doing business, focus on R&D and digital economy shall definitely change the functioning of industry verticals and increase their productivity, which, in turn, will help in creating massive job opportunities and ensure all-inclusive growth of the countrymen. This development will eventually bring less-privileged people into the mainstream of the society.
CP Gurnani, MD & CEO, Tech Mahindra: We completely hail the government’s vision of a New India that will thrive on the confluence of new age digital technologies, quality education and apt skilling. We look forward to partnering with the industry and academia to nurture the start-up ecosystem, and to fuel a culture of research and innovation that will help travel the road to India becoming a five trillion dollar economy.
Debajit Roy, Country Director, QAD India: The government’s move to lower the GST on EV has opened new avenues for the industry. Reducing the GST on EVs from 12 percent to 5 percent can be seen as a big step in favor of sales of EV cars in India. The deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on the loan interest to purchase an electric vehicle in India will not just benefit the industry but also for consumers who are looking to switch to electric vehicles. There is pool of the companies emerging in this space to evolve the entire ecosystem and the opportunities created by government will enable these companies to penetrate fast.
Deval Seth, Managing Director, Giesecke & Devrient MS India: Technology, digitisation and modernization will have a great role in pulling up India to a $3 trillion economy this year. For instance, as more devices get connected, the market for eSIMs is set to explode in India in areas such as connected cars, manufacturing and consumer durables. The government’s move to lower the GST rate on EV from 12% to 5% and to make EVs affordable for consumers with additional income tax deduction will bring connectivity to the vehicles and G&D sees India strongly moving forward on the eSim journey which has been adopted globally.
Sachin Dev Duggal, Founder & CEO, Engineer.ai: The budget encourages skill development across the country and especially within the tech industry – it’s a well-grounded approach to propel India towards a $5 tn economy. The focus on modern technologies like Big Data, VR, 3D Printing, AI and IoT which will not only provide job opportunities for metropolitan urbanites living in the biggest cities, but also those in rural areas, as well.
Sanjay Bakaya, Regional Vice President, India & South Asia, Mavenir: We are happy that our government has acknowledged the pivotal role of digital technology in India’s evolution to a five-trillion dollar economy over the next five years. Budget proposals focused on evolving technologies like AI, big data, robotics will not only fuel entrepreneurship but also open enormous job opportunities for our people.
NASSCOM: The government’s intent to enhance digital skills is a huge step in the positive direction. We applaud the government for recognising this as the need of the hour, and committing to train 10 million young professionals in emerging fields like AI, IoT, Big Data, Robotics and 3D printing. We will work with the government to understand the implementation process for the roll-out. The clarity on Angel Tax is a welcome step to further evangelize the start-up community. A new television channel to allow start-ups to promote themselves as well as make critical connects with VC networks to raise funding, will further build the community.
A consistent ask from the industry has been a forward looking SEZ policy to strengthen India’s position as a global hub for IT Services. This sector contributes 7.9 % to the GDP and is one of its largest contributors, and creates around 4 mn jobs, hence a lack of incentives will impact India’s image as a destination.
Ramaswamy Venkatachalam, Managing Director – Banking and Payments, FIS: The government proposal to levy TDS of 2 percent on cash withdrawal exceeding Rs. 1 crore in a year from a bank account will encourage MSMEs to conduct business through digital route. We believe BHIM, UPI, Aadhaar Pay, NEFT, RTGS will be more used by the businesses making India less cash economy, as the government has announced that commercial establishments with annual turnover of Rs. 50 crore will have to use these modes of payments while no charges or merchant discount rates will be imposed on customers or merchants. This is a very reassuring move to stimulate digital payments in the country, particularly in tier II and III cities.