Real-money gaming firms’ tax problem; Doctor on Wheels
Despite the tax hurdles, real-money gaming companies are optimistic about the year ahead.
And, it’s a liftoff!
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) began the new year with a bang by successfully launching its X-Ray Polarimeter Satellite on Monday. The mission will provide valuable insights into celestial objects such as black holes.
A beaming ISRO Chief S Somnath, during a post-event interaction, said the agency expects to further launch as many as 12-14 missions this year.
It’s a packed calendar for ISRO!
In other news, Goods and Services Tax (GST) collections jumped 10% to about Rs 1.64 lakh crore in December compared to Rs 1.49 lakh crore in the same month a year ago, the finance ministry said on Monday.
And, a record of 8.18 crore tax returns have been filed until December 31 this fiscal against 7.51 crore I-T returns filed at the end of December 31, 2022, according to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).
Lastly, a look at 50 years of video game industry revenue, by platform.
In today’s newsletter, we will talk about
- Gaming firms grapple with taxes
- Meet Madurai’s Doctor on Wheels
- Top trends in the MSME sector this year
Here’s your trivia for today: Who was the first living person to appear on Roman coins?
The revised tax slabs—which came into effect on October 1—saw ripple effects across most real-money gaming (RMG) firms, with both big and small players, such as Mobile Premier League, Hike Rushing Gaming, and Spartan Poker, resorting to layoffs.
Despite dealing with the heat of the new tax regime, real-money gaming companies are optimistic about their fortunes in 2024 and hope to find ways to absorb the impact of GST this year.
- As per the amendments to the Integrated GST Act, offshore online gaming platforms must register with the Indian government and pay 28% tax in accordance with the domestic law.
- The government–in a bid to tackle unregulated offshore entities–has made it clear that separate rules related to this will be issued.
- While gaming companies welcome the government’s move, they say that, for India to be recognised as an ideal destination for international players, the current legislation might have to be amended.
Dr Swaminathan Chandramouli (34) is on a singular mission–to provide healthcare to the elderly at their doorstep. To fulfill this goal, he has developed a “mini ICU”, which is a modified Maruti Eeco ambulance. The vehicle has essential ICU equipment including infusion pumps, syringe drivers, oxygen cylinders, and more.
- A Madurai resident, Dr Chandramouli started the service in 2019. Starting from just eight cases, he now receives over 600 cases in a month.
- Doctor on Wheels offers services such as basic consultations, palliative care, and post-hospitalisation support.
- His team delivers medications, collects blood samples for tests, and offers facilities such as portable X-rays, and more.
The year 2023 marked a watershed for MSMEs (Micro, small and medium enterprises). From digital integration to brand establishment, these enterprises have reshaped themselves to thrive in an intensely competitive business arena. This year, MSMEs are gearing up to adopt tech in the best possible way and streamline processes for a better work culture.
Into the future:
- MSMEs are paying attention to supply chain solutions. In the past few years, many startups such as , , and have also come to the fore to help MSMEs in their supply chain operations. The trend is expected to grow in 2024.
- Shaurin Patel, Founder of additive manufacturing company Vexma, says that digitisation of spares/machine parts especially for those imported ones is going to make a difference. This shift will help reduce import lead times, customs duties, carbon footprint and save money in in inventory capital by producing on demand.
- Adopting sustainable practices is another trend that the sector will observe in 2024. According to SIDBI (Small Industries Development Bank of India), about 90% of MSMEs view cost reduction as the most crucial factor that motivates them to implement sustainability initiatives.
News & updates
- Money matters: Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund accounted for about a quarter of the almost $124 billion spent by sovereign wealth funds worldwide last year. According to a preliminary annual report from industry specialist Global SWF, PIF spent $31.5 billion in 2023 compared with $123.8 billion spent by all sovereign wealth funds.
- Earthquake: A powerful earthquake struck central Japan on Monday, triggering warnings for residents to evacuate some areas on its west coast, knocking out power to thousands of homes and disrupting flights and rail services to the affected region.
- Comeback: Former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka made a winning return to tennis on Monday after spending over a year away from the sport prioritising her mental health and then becoming a mother in July. The four-time grand slam champion beat Germany’s Tamara Korpatsch 6-3 7-6 (11-9) in the first round of the Brisbane International.
Who was the first living person to appear on Roman coins?
Answer: Julius Caesar.
Early coins in ancient Rome depicted the heads of gods and goddesses on the front side, while the back depicted animals, natural resources, symbols, and references to historical events. In 44 BC, Julius Caesar became the first living person to appear on these coins.
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