Overview of Budget 2018: Comprehensive analysisAlok Patnia
More than 50 percent of India's population is below the age of 25, and over 65 percent below 35. This gives India a phenomenal advantage from an economic standpoint, and otherwise too. Startups, disruptive technology, and new age businesses are pushing India to be a global economic superpower, and were expecting this Budget to be a more focused one.
The Budget 2018 has focused on the agri-sector, and special emphasis on low-cost farming. The government has committed to set the minimum support price at 1.5 times the production cost for Kharif crops, and liberalisation of exports.
Apart from this, the food processing sector and dairy sector have received a massive boost, while the Kisan Credit Card facility has been extended to fisheries and animal husbandry sectors. There are many other benefits which were announced about the agricultural sector.
The Budget also laid emphasis on Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, with the finance minister announcing that the government does not consider cryptocurrencies legal tender or coin, and that it would take all measures to eliminate use of these crypto-assets in financing illegitimate activities or as part of the payment system. However, the minister added that the government will explore the use of Blockchain technology proactively to usher in the digital economy.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley also highlighted the importance of job creation and the importance to MSMEs and startups. However, no direct relief on the Angel Tax front was a disappointment. The government, however, plans to set up new measures to strengthen the environment for the growth of venture capital funds and angel investors acting as the early investors for most of the start-ups across India.
“Venture capital funds and angel investors need an innovative, special development and regulatory regime for their growth. We have taken a number of policy decisions including launching of the start-up in India program building a robust investment and taxation regime” said the Finance Minister in his speech.