Budget 2018: Reactions From Industry Players

 

The medical insurance penetration in the country currently stands at a mere 20 percent. Seen from this perspective, the government’s commitment to provide up to Rs 5 lakh per year per family for secondary and tertiary medical care is a much welcome move. This will help many more people get adequate treatment without the concern of losing their life’s savings on bills. The scope of this initiative is 10 crore families, which is also good. We hope in the future the government will expand this cover to more Indians and also initiate measures to further popularise medical insurance. Other notable moves include the focus on helping TB patients and Health and Wellness centres.

However, the healthcare industry was expecting relief from high GST rates on medical equipment,which would have helped healthcare providers cut medical costs as well as improve services. Unfortunately, this concern hasn’t been addressed. Apart from this, there also needs to be a long-term vision from the government on preventive healthcare and improving the general health of people so as to reduce incidence of lifestyle diseases. This again has been missing from the announcements on healthcare” said Dr Dharminder Nagar MD, Paras Healthcare.

“Provision of up to Rs 5 lakh per year per family for secondary and tertiary medical care is a great move in helping prevent families from extreme financial hardships in availing quality medical facilities. Another great move is launching 1.5 lakh healthcare centers. Given that medical insurance penetration is a mere 20 percent in the country, this was much needed. However, we still lack foolproof mechanisms for early screening of fatal diseases like cancers. We should also look into implementing a system for timely and periodic screening as a routine. This space will require additional funding for research and development in newer fields of medical sciences, particularly in diagnostics and therapeutics.” Zoya Brar, Founder & MD, CORE Diagnostics.

Mayank Bhangadia, Co-founder, and CEO, Roposo,  While Budget 2018 is majorly focused on the agriculture and education industry, there are a few points which may act as the foundation of future growth of startups in India. The reduction of corporate tax is clearly one of them and would surely help to some extent. The proposed plan to set up 5 lakh Wifi Hotspots is also quite a progressive decision, given that it is implemented properly and as soon as possible.

The budget would have been a lot better if it focused more on start-ups which comprise the bottom of the industry pyramid. I believe incorporating that into the plan would have helped in the progression of the industry as a whole. Apart from that, I am quite glad that the government has placed growth as its main agenda for the budget rather than the 2019 elections.”  

Ravi Virmani, CEO & Founder, Credihealth-

“The Union Budget 2018 has taken a step towards making health care more accessible with it’s flagship National Health Protection Scheme initiative which provides upto Rs 5 lakh per family per year, for hospitalization. However, the devil is in the detail as the million dollar question that prevails is – will these benefits be cascaded to the common man? On the business front, unfortunately, there has been no special mention of health-tech startups in general. Private healthcare sector should have been provided subsidy and exemption from GST to facilitate the greater spread of business and enable government’s push to make healthcare accessible to all. Furthermore, on one hand, the government is talking about going digital, however, it has not supplemented the act by connecting it the digital drive with certain sectors such as healthcare and education which serve to be the backbone for the upliftment of well being of the society as a whole.”– Ravi Virmani, CEO & Founder, Credihealth. 

The Union budget 2018 was a pragmatic one and focused on fortifying the economy as a whole. The Government’s endeavor to provide housing to every poor citizen by 2020 through the establishment of a dedicated affordable housing fund in the national housing bank, along with priority sector status being granted, is a commendable one. The government assuming ownership of NHB from RBI is also positive as it would translate into the focus of NHB shifting from regulation to development.

The reduction of the GST rate from 12% to 8% on affordable and low-cost housing units last week was a welcome reform.  Building 31 lakh homes in 2018-19  in urban areas and a further 51 lakh in rural areas will go a long way in addressing primary housing demand.

Overall, the strong economic impetus provided in the budget will ultimately boost housing and real estate. The introduction of long term capital gains tax at 10 per cent on equities will also have an indirect impact on making investment in real estate (over listed stocks) more attractive than before. Tax breaks being granted to senior citizens and salaried employees will increase their disposable income available for making capital purchases. A push on infrastructure comprising public investment in the rural areas, agricultural marketing, urban connectivity, particularly Metros etc will also multiply investment prospects for real estate sector- Mr. Khushru Jijina, Managing Director, Piramal Finance & Piramal Housing Finance .

” The long-term capital gains on listed securities and the dividend tax on equity mutual funds is a right step to generate resources required for driving demand in rural India. With this move, the Budget has also neutralised the unfair tax regime of Zero tax on the long-term capital gain on listed equities vs any other asset class like Venture Capital, Real Estate, Start-ups, Debt Funds etc. We admire the appreciation by the Finance Ministry on the role played by the Venture Capital Funds & the angel investors. Today’s step shall encourage much-needed investment required in Indian start-ups”, says Mr. Sunil K Goyal, Managing Director & Fund Manager, YourNest Venture Capital.

“The reduction of corporate tax by 25% for companies with a turnover of 250Crore is a positive step. Moreover, the interest shown by the Government to promote online lending is also encouraging for Fintech. Although the Finance Minister touched upon the Angel Tax but it is yet to be seen that what is there to boost the business eco-system. The move to assign uniques IDs for Companies is also a welcome step. Personally, I am very happy to witness the measures taken in education and health sectors”. – Mr. Dinesh Agarwal, Founder and CEO, IndiaMART.com

“The Union Budget for the year 2018 is in line with our expectations and requirements of the economy. The country is still reaping the benefits from forward-looking initiatives proposed over the previous financial year such as demonetisation, the GST rollout and the increased focus towards digitisation. The programs that have been announced for the rural, agriculture, healthcare and manufacturing sectors will drive essential growth. The continued focus on MSME’s with the allocation of over 3000 crores for credit support along with backing the efforts of FinTech companies’ will help in creating more avenues of financial inclusion for the underserved segment. Bank recapitalisation will also sustain these efforts by adding much-needed credit in the market. The emphasis on complementing existing digitisation efforts by connecting villages through high speed optic fibre networks and building Wi-Fi spots will give an impetus to upcoming digital sectors that rely heavily on connectivity like FinTech and Edtech. We are happy with the current focus of the Government, as the country continues on the path of ‘ease of doing business’ it is great to see strong emphasis being out on ‘ease of living’ for the masses” says Harshvardhan Lunia, CEO & Co-Founder, Lendingkart Group.

“To be able to fully realise the potential of Agriculture exports, the government needs to invest heavily in technology introduction across production and distribution. A mechanised and connected farm will go a long way to ensure high productivity and timely delivery to the market. Many countries including Israel has successfully demonstrated the technological know how in optimising the farm output.

With high arable land but small holdings, the Govt should look beyond merely utilising the existing farm, and should actively promote the modern agricultural methods  such as vertical farming and hydroponics” says Mr. Faisal Ahmad, Founder & CEO, BIS Research .

“On the infrastructure front, the Finance Minister has shown remarkable restraint, and therein lies the brilliance of his announcements. India is at the cusp of an infrastructure revolution, and the budgetary support of Rs. 5.97 lakh crore for FY19 will be a big positive for the sector and supplementary industries such as cement.

The focus of the government will likely remain on effective and timely execution of existing projects,with the FM promising construction of 9,000 km highways by the end of FY19. Also, it was encouraging to see the reinforcement of the government’s commitment to the Bharatmala Project, which will be a major boost to demand in the next financial year.

Besides this, the announcement of the Affordable Housing Fund was also a positive announcement,especially since it will create an impetus for the housing sector, which contributes around 65% to India’s cement demand”, says Mr. Yadupati Singhania, CMD, JK Cement Ltd .

eScan for Story on Budget expectations By Mr. Lakshminarayan, Vice President – Finance, eScan.

1. What will be your top wish/priority in the upcoming budget which you want FM to
address for well-being of business community?
The Union Budget for the year 2018-19 will be unique as many prime factors like GST will
play a key role this year. With the Government of India promoting Digital and cashless
economy, we expect benefits to be given to investments done in building the IT network
infrastructure. FM should consider incentivizing IT infrastructure towards encompassing
high-quality technology facility in the digital era today. We hope that the government
incorporates policies and measures to also develop the security software industry in India.

2. What benefits you would like to be given to common man so that they will have much more buying capacity?
We hope to see a favorable change in the Income Tax benefits for the customers as the
spending is still anticipated to decline due to GST. We expect that the budget would provide
tax deductions on purchase of IT devices for consumers. This will help the industry to make
improved technology more accessible to the common man to support the initiative of
Digital India.

According to Debasish Mishra, head of Energy and Resources, Deloitte India, “Modi government has taken up a huge task of providing universal access of energy to the poorest of poor. Saubhagya target of 4 crore electricity connections and 8 crore gas LPG connection under Ujjwala are going to transform the socio-economic landscape of India”

“Cut in excise duty sends a clear signal that government wants the consumers not to pay beyond these levels of retail prices and also the retail price oil de-regulation is here to stay. This sends a strong signal to investors that Modi government’s reform measures are long term and here to stay.”

Mr. Mayur Shah, Managing Director, Marathon Group and President CREDAI MCHI

The budget has focused on areas such as agriculture, rural sections and health care that are vital and have lacked attention in the previous budget.

Announcements on building 1 cr houses to be built under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana in rural areas will surely promote housing in the rural areas. This includes 31 Lakh homes will be built in 2018-19 in urban areas. Also establishing a dedicated affordable housing fund under National Housing Bank for priority sector lending will help developers in financing projects. Government assuming ownership of National Housing Bank from RBI would translate in to focus of National Housing Bank shifting from regulation to development.

The government has shown special focus on developing connectivity in Mumbai by strengthening and expanding the rail network.  Creating smart cities will further boost the spirit of development in the country.

Corporate tax reduction for MSME will be good news for developers and  10 percent tax has been charged on capital gain , may bring more investments to Real estate , as it’s a level playing field with equity market .

The government has also addressed the anomaly under section 43 to tax real estate transactions at their real value rather than the value arrived at by applying the artificially higher circle rate.

However, we were expecting some more from the honorable finance minister. Post demonetization and GST the sector has been limping back. In such circumstances an announcement on providing industry sector to real estate would have made things easy. Also, there was no announcement on GST, very high rate coupled with states Stamp duty, around 20 % transaction cost is being biggest dampener for real estate and housing.

The industry was expecting some measures for home buyers on higher interest exemptions on home loans.

Manoj Gaur, Vice President CREDAI-National & MD, Gaurs Group

This year’s union budget presentation missed on providing the much needed cushion to the realty sector. This was the first budget session post the implementation of RERA and GST, and thus we had hoped for certain incentives for this sector. Government’s seriousness and target to achieve housing for all by 2022 saw a boost for the affordable housing segment, where an affordable housing fund has been proposed. Apart from this, heavy allocation of funds towards infrastructure upgradation will help towards the nation’s development.

Deepak Kapoor, President CREDAI-Western U.P. & Director, Gulshan Homz

For a sentiment driven sector such as real estate, it is imperative that the budget proposes benefits towards the personal income tax model. Today’s union budget did not address towards the taxation structure for the general masses, but did provide a benefit to MSME by extending the corporate tax of 25 percent for companies with an annual revenue upto Rs. 250 crores. Reduced tax burden on corporates might allow real estate to see new start ups and increase job opportunities.

Gaurav Gupta, General Secretary CREDAI-Ghaziabad & Director, SG Estates

Union Budget 2018-19 has stressed a lot upon developing infrastructure and creating a pool of job opportunities. Though, there wasn’t a direct benefit accorded to the realty sector this time, but the proposal of development of 4 lakh Kms of road and upgrading rural infrastructure will greatly bring up the Tier 2 and 3 cities of India on the realty map. This is in the long run will help boost the housing demand and investment opportunities for those regions.

Abhishek Bansal, Executive Director, Pacific Group

The government has shown keen interest towards enhancing the connectivity and infrastructure in the country by proposing an amount of Rs. 50 Lakh crores. Agriculture sector was the biggest gainer in today’s Budget presentation along with a major relaxation to MSMEs by way of reduced corporate tax. Real estate sector did not see a direct incentive today, but better infrastructure and connectivity will pave way for greater housing and commercial demand in the developing regions.

Pradeep Aggarwal, Co-Founder & Chairman, Signature Global

We welcome the union budget 2018-19 by the government which has aimed to provide a major thrust to the affordable housing segment in the country with a target to fulfil the dream of housing for all by 2022. Major announcements were made for the betterment of this segment once again. Proposal to open up an affordable housing fund will greatly benefit in the long run. Plan to develop over 1 crore houses in the rural areas will significantly help the housing mission. Announcement of development of new roadways across the nation will allow the untapped regions to develop. With such scale development, job creation is bound to happen as well.

Vikas Bhasin, MD, Saya Group

Real estate sector got missed out in today’s budget presentation with just some indirect long term benefits in offer. Work on the infrastructure front has been the backbone and the same has received massive allocation of funds yet again. With rapid development, more and more smaller regions will come into lime light, and may become the next investment hubs. With such large scale development, ample of job creation will occur which will open the gates for housing demand as well.

Mr. R. Narayan, CEO Power2SME for your reference.

“The government’s intent of promoting ‘ease of doing business’ among MSME players was evident in the announcements made by FM Arun Jaitley for MSMEs. With major focus on improving lending in the MSME sector, the government has announced a number of measures to ease the lending process and has also addressed to improve loan accessibility for MSMEs.

The allocation of Rs 3 lakh crore for lending under Mudra will definitely boost the sector financially and help the MSME’s grow their businesses more efficiently. Further, reduction of the corporate tax to 25% for small companies with annual turnover of up to Rs. 250 crore is a master stroke and this will bring relief to about 90% of MSME players in India. The government has also proposed revamping the system of sanctioning of loans to SMEs by linking it with GSTN. This will immensely help MSMEs with better management of working capital and faster discounting of the bills. Bank recapitalization will enable the public sector banks to lend an additional credit of 5 lakh crore, thereby allowing more companies and MSMEs to access required business loans. The FM’s agenda to provide viable environment for FinTech companies to grow will further help bridge MSME lending gap.

However, we had hoped for some more transformational reforms to boost the overall morale of MSME players. Some of the measures we expected the government to focus on are:

  • New reforms or strengthen of existing MSME Development Act to address the issue of delayed payments faced by MSMEs. As per recent reports, a total of Rs. 10,000 crore is a collective pending payment towards MSME players”

Dhiraj Jain, Director, Mahagun Group

This was the last full union budget presentation by the current government which has come out with a mixed bag for the realty sector. Since this was the first budget for the realty sector after the nationwide implementation of GST and RERA, we were expecting some gaps to be filled. Apart from affordable housing segment and infrastructure development, nothing much has been presented for the realty sector. Although, he are hopeful for the remaining budget session to bring some respite for this sector. 

“The emphasis on strengthening rural income and giving a push to affordable housing segment is a positive development.  Although the real estate sector was expecting more in terms of getting industry status to the sector, the push towards “formal employment” and Infrastructure development will create a positive push for employment creation, which is the critical need of the hour. Mr. Ashish Sarin, CEO, Alpha Corp.

“The government’s intent of promoting ‘ease of doing business’ among MSME players was evident in the announcements made by FM Arun Jaitley for MSMEs. With major focus on improving lending in the MSME sector, the government has announced a number of measures to ease the lending process and has also addressed to improve loan accessibility for MSMEs.

The allocation of Rs 3 lakh crore for lending under Mudra will definitely boost the sector financially and help the MSME’s grow their businesses more efficiently. Further, reduction of the corporate tax to 25% for small companies with annual turnover of up to Rs. 250 crore is a master stroke and this will bring relief to about 90% of MSME players in India. The government has also proposed revamping the system of sanctioning of loans to SMEs by linking it with GSTN. This will immensely help MSMEs with better management of working capital and faster discounting of the bills. Bank recapitalization will enable the public sector banks to lend an additional credit of 5 lakh crore, thereby allowing more companies and MSMEs to access required business loans. The FM’s agenda to provide viable environment for FinTech companies to grow will further help bridge MSME lending gap.

However, we had hoped for some more transformational reforms to boost the overall morale of MSME players. Some of the measures we expected the government to focus on are:

· New reforms or strengthen of existing MSME Development Act to address the issue of delayed payments faced by MSMEs. As per recent reports, a total of Rs. 10,000 crore is a collective pending payment towards MSME players” says Mr. R. Narayan, Founder and CEO, Power2SME.

“”Education for once got due attention from the finance minister in the budget speech. Mr Jaitley acknowledged that technology will be the biggest driver in improving the quality of education. Among other major announcements are Eklavya schools in tribal districts on the lines of Navodaya schools, integrated B Ed, initiative for teachers training. Announcement of five lakh WiFi hot-spots in rural areas will enable access to high quality education to even even rural regions of the country” says Col. Rajendra Prasad Nadella, CO-FOUNDER, MANAGING DIRECTOR, iScholar.

“The measures announced by the FM for the education sector will go a long way in helping scholars from IITs and IISc publish their work n top ranked journals. Currently, the quality of academic output is quite bad and the slew of measures announced by the FM – in particular, investment in research and the PM’S new initiative will certainly encourage scholars to publish their research in world class journals. This is the only way Indian Universities can even dream to enter the coveted top 100 World University Rankings”says Professor Madhu Veeraraghavan, Director and T.A. Pai Chair Professor of Finance T.A. PAI MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE.

Vishal Malhotra, Tax Leader, Technology, Media & Entertainment and Telecommunications (TMT), EY India says, “Overall, budget is on the expected lines.  The proposal to treat foreign exchange gains/losses other than purchase of capital assets from outside India, as a revenue item, should benefit the telecom operators since presently, any foreign exchange losses on domestic procurement including purchase of spectrum is not tax deductible.  Increase in customs duty on handsets to 20 percent should give a fillip to domestic manufacturing though this may increase the cost of imported handsets.”

Mr. Balu Ramachandran, Head of Air and Distribution, Cleartrip, “India has achieved the position of being the fastest growing domestic aviation market in the world. Airport capacity addition in most imperative to ensure that the growth impetus does not hit an infrastructure roadblock and it is heartening to see the government backing up the ambitious UDAN plan with budgetary provisions for airports.

“The Union Budget for 2018 saw some key announcements for the digital industry in India. The announcements included the allocation of Rs 3,073 crore to the Digital India scheme and the allocation of Rs 10,000 crore for the telecom sector will help in the development of rural Wi-Fi, providing easy internet access by setting up 5 lakh Wi-Fi hotspots. The government’s move will definitely help the industry in tapping unmapped areas of the country and would allow consumers to access the digital landscape and benefit from its offerings” says Mr. Gautam SinhaCEO of Times Internet.

“The Health insurance for the masses is a noble thought, that needs to navigate actual claim settlements without any red-tape. We would have loved to see that investment going into upgrading the quality of government hospitals across the board” says Mr. Gagan Kapur, Co-Founder & CEO, EasyBuyHealth.

“Budget 2018 comes with a positive outlook towards education. As outlined in the budget, getting students to the school is not a concern anymore but improvement in the quality of education is the need of the hour. The plan to devise a district-wise strategy, enhance teacher training and usage of digital boards is welcome. But it won’t be enough. The National Achievement Survey shows that even in class 5, more than 50% of students were not able to do a simple subtraction of 555 minus 198. To be able to have macro improvement, we need to go micro. We should delineate the learning outcomes and have one-to-one follow up for each and every student. We at IMAX Program have been working to upgrade traditional classrooms to one-to-one classrooms where there is individualised feedback for students on every single learning outcome, and the results have been very encouraging. District-level tracking is a positive step, but we should fast move towards interventions that allow us to follow-up and improve every student” says Naveen Mandava, Co-Founder – IMAX Program.

“While there was no specific mention about the automobile industry in the budget, the sector is poised to benefit from the government’s strong focus on boosting infrastructure and connectivity. Increased allocation of funds for roads and highways will bring positive sentiments for the sector by increasing demand for transport. Infrastructure development has always been prerequisite for growth and the key focus towards boosting rural economy and improving the farming sector will further spur the demand for automobile components especially for tractors and two-wheelers. With a certain focus on increase in custom duty on the auto component, we also expect a boost for the manufacturing sector.” says Mr. Rohit Saboo, President and CEO, National Engineering Industries Limited (NEI).

“We welcome government’s proposal to allow a standard deduction of Rs 40,000 as it is a reward for the salaried class. The standard deduction will help employees to reduce their tax liability. It is also heartening to see that our government is talking about reducing paperwork and compliance overheads, which has been our objective as well. For the last two years, Zeta has been enabling salaried people to digitize their employee tax benefits and help them save more money.”says Zeta Co-founder and CTO Ramki Gaddipati.

After laying the foundation for a more robust and organized real estate sector, we anticipated the government to further reinvigorate the industry by way of lowering the  GST rates, allowing single window clearance and affording an industry status to the real estate sector.  These changes would have contributed positively to hasten the recovery of the industry which is today one of the largest employer and contributor to country’s GDP.

Having said that, the Government’s continued focus on affordable housing with an establishment of a dedicated fund will further propel the realization of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) which aims to bring more people under the ambit of inclusion. Greater focus on developing the infrastructure layout by way of increased budget allocation for highways, acceleration of rural roads construction is a welcome move as it will drive greater socio- economic development around these regions.” Amarjit Bakshi, Managing Director, Central Park.

“Taking the lead from last year, this year’s budget did not have much for the Indian startup sector, it still holds a lot of promise. However, the government has reinstated its support to the MSME sector with INR 3 lakh crores being allotted to the MUDRA Yojna revamping easy loan facilities for the beneficiaries. The highlight was the promotion towards infrastructure, healthcare and agriculture investment where government has allotted INR 2,000 crores in agricultural market fund, the massive health insurance plan which is likely to cost govt around INR 50,000 crore annually and INR 50 lakh crores to improve infrastructure, promoting SME’s interest in sectors that directly contribute to the growth of our country” says Geetika Dayal, Executive Director TiE Delhi-NCR.

Healthcare sector has been a clear priority in budget 2018. There has been a good balance on short term respite from out of pocket health costs & building capacity in the long term.

The Ayushman Bharath the scheme to provide health cover to 50 crore Indians of Rs 5 lakhs is simply audacious in scale and reach and could be a game changer. Healthcare needs to be universally accessible and also start from preventive care. This should be taken care of with the proposed 1.5 lakh health & wellness centres .

The idea to increase the number of doctors is good with the 24 district hospitals being upgraded , however strengthening of the other post graduate programmes like the DNB course would also need to be done simultaneously. Health can be one of the key job creators. More focus from the Skill India initiative with these announcements should see this sector contribute in this area too.

We hope that other announcements like the Pradhan Mantri Research Fellowship & the Research allocation would also spur healthcare research. With 1200 crores to the National Health Policy , we look forward to a continued impetus to the National Programme for Control of Blindness which is one of the most successful Public – Private healthcare programmes. 

It would be interesting to see how these would be funded, the finance minister indicated a widening of the tax base and an additional 1% cess, we only hope that the 3.5% fiscal deficit does not force a rethink on these allocations later. Also it would be good to expand the ease of doing business to ease of working with insurance & schemes and simplifying the process for health care providers.

Dr. Kaushik Murali, Paediatric Ophthalmologist & President, Sankara Eye Hospital

Mr.Rajiv Bhalla, Managing Director at Barco Electronic Systems 

“The Union Budget 2018-19 is a balanced budget that I believe will help drive & sustain long-term growth for India. The increased focus on higher infrastructure spends, smart cities, digital India, and healthcare is a step in the right direction. With 99 smart cities being selected and an amount of over Rs. 2 lakh crore being allocated, it will give the nation a significant opportunity to upscale its Infrastructure as a growth driver. In addition, doubling the Digital India budget allocation this year is a step ahead towards becoming a digital-first economy which will assist in reshaping and empowering the country by leveraging technology. 

The budget also brings momentum to India’s Healthcare by announcing Rs. 1,200 crore for 1.5 lakh wellness health centers, which is set to bring advancements in the Indian Healthcare sector.

Furthermore, we hope that impact due to the increased customs duties will offset the government’s dedicated push towards promoting manufacturing in India.

All in all, the budget is set to have a transformational impact and give a massive boost to the economy.

Sathvik Vishwanath, Co-founder and CEO, Unocoin

Based on the Union Budget 2018 announcement, there is no change in government’s stance with respect to trading cryptocurrencies. Crypto currency holders need not panic and the business is as usual at Unocoin.

 Chander Baljee, Managing Director, Royal Orchid Hotels, Union Budget FY2018-19

Commenting on the proposed Union Budget for FY2018-19, Chander Baljee, Managing Director of Royal Orchid Hotels. Said- “This is an inclusive budget with prime focus on agriculture, healthcare, education and infrastructure sector. Though there is no direct mention of hospitality sector in the proposed Union Budget, however, various measures to enhance disposable income and the government’s plan to increase the airport capacity to handle one billion trips a year will augur well for mid-segment hotels.

The conversion of ten prominent tourist destinations as iconic and model destinations will boost the hospitality and tourism sector in India. The scheme to magnify the visitor experience at 110 Model Monuments under the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) under the National Heritage City Augmentation scheme of the government will help develop properties in these destinations by keeping their heritage in mind. We at Royal Orchid Hotels have started expanding our properties to Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities. Increased investment in infrastructure will help boost travel among the masses thus increasing the business for hospitality and tourism sector.

“The setting-up of Affordable Housing Fund under the aegis of the National Housing Bank (NHB) with a massive thrust on infrastructure development are welcome moves. A program like RISE to revitalize revitalization of infra and education systems with an initial budget outlay of Rs 1 lakh crore will have a long-term effect on the real estate sector and our society at large. Just a few days ago, the governme

“The announcement towards building a holistic healthcare protection ecosystem is a revolutionary move undertaken by the government. The health insurance claims in the country today contributes to nearly 5 percent of the total healthcare spends, clearly reflecting that most of the citizens in the country are either under-insured or un-insured. The announcement of National Healthcare protection scheme reinforces government’s commitment towards providing healthcare protection solutions and mitigating the financial uncertainties of vulnerable families in the country. Additionally, FM’s proposal to raise a deduction under health insurance premium to Rs. 50,000 and Rs. 1 lakh for senior citizens with critical illnesses, along with the allocation of additional funds under the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna will provide a fresh impetus to the adoption of protection solutions in the country.”

nt reduced the GST rate on affordable housing units from 12% to 8% and I believe that such reduction would also be extended to all the types of residential properties which are under-construction across the country.”

Honey Katiyal is a Founder of Investors Clinic, a real estate consulting firm

NSN Murty, Partner and Leader- Smart Cities, PwC India. “Government expenditure on thousands of projects initiated under Smart Cities Mission across India going has already created a large marketplace for private sector and is going to further translate into jobs at all level, better and efficient infrastructure and liveable cities for everyone.”

“The announcement towards building a holistic healthcare protection ecosystem is a revolutionary move undertaken by the government. The health insurance claims in the country today contributes to nearly 5 percent of the total healthcare spends, clearly reflecting that most of the citizens in the country are either under-insured or un-insured. The announcement of National Healthcare protection scheme reinforces government’s commitment towards providing healthcare protection solutions and mitigating the financial uncertainties of vulnerable families in the country. Additionally, FM’s proposal to raise a deduction under health insurance premium to Rs. 50,000 and Rs. 1 lakh for senior citizens with critical illnesses, along with the allocation of additional funds under the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojna will provide a fresh impetus to the adoption of protection solutions in the country.” says Mr. Mayank Bathwal,  Chief Executive Officer – Aditya Birla Health Insurance Company Limited.

 

 

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