Nirmala Sitharaman, the Finance Minister, presented the Union Budget 2022-23 in Parliament on Tuesday, 1st February 2022. The government has proposed expanding highways across the country by 25,000 kilometers, allocating Rs 60,000 crore to the Nal se Jal scheme, five river link projects across various states, an additional Rs 48,000 crore to the PM housing scheme, and boosting infrastructure development in the North East as part of five major infrastructure projects.
The Finance Minister also announced a 5G spectrum auction in 2022, proposed setting up 75 digital banking units in 75 districts, and announced a national mental health program, which has been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and taxed digital currencies such as cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens.
The following are the most recent updates from Sitharaman’s Budget speech:
- The top focus of the budget this year are PM Gati Shakti, Inclusive Development, Productivity Enhancement,
- Sunrise Opportunities, Energy Transition, Climate Action, Financing of investments.
- FY22 GDP Growth Estimated At 9.2%.
- Capex target expanded by 35.4 percent — from Rs 5.54 lakh crore to Rs 7.50 lakh crore. FY23 effective capex seen at Rs 10.7 lakh crore.
- ECLGS cover expanded by Rs 50,000 to Rs 5 lakh crore.
- The government has lowered its disinvestment target for FY23 at Rs 65,000 crore.
- The government has set a gross market borrowing target of Rs 14.95 lakh crore for FY23.
- The government will tax income from digital asset transfers at 30%.
- No deduction is allowed while computing income except the cost of acquisition.
- Loss cannot be set off from any other income.
- Gift of the digital asset to be taxed at receiver’s end.
- A new provision to allow taxpayers to file an updated return.
- Updated returns can be filed within 2 years from the end of the relevant assessment year.
- Alternate Minimum Tax for cooperative societies to be cut to 15%.
- The proposal will reduce the surcharge on cooperative societies to 7%, for those whose income is between Rs 1 crore and Rs 10 crore.
- Tax deduction limit increased to 14% on employers contribution to NPS account of state govt employees.
- ECLGS extended till March 2023, 60 lakh jobs eyed in next 5 years.
- Digital ecosystem for skilling and livelihood to be launched.
- This will aim to skill, reskill, upskill citizens through online training.
- API-based skill credentials, payment layers to find relevant jobs and opportunities.
- National highway network to be expanded by 25,000 km during FY 22-23.
- Strategic transfer of ownership of Air India is completed now.
- Four multi-modal national parks contracts will be awarded in FY23.
- One product one railway station will be popularised, 400 new Vande Bharat trains to be introduced.
- PM Gatishakti masterplan for expressways will be formulated in the next financial year.
- 100 PM Gati Shakti terminals to be set up in next three years.
- Focus on public investment to modernize infrastructure over the medium term, leveraging the tech platform of Gati Shakti via a multi-modal approach.
- PM Gati Shakti will pull forward the economy and will lead to more jobs and opportunities for the youth.
Housing & urban planning
- Rs 48,000 crore is allotted for PM Awas Yojana.
- In 2022-23, 80 lakh houses will be completed for identified beneficiaries of PM Awas Yojana; 60,000 houses will be identified as beneficiaries for PM Awas Yojana in rural & urban areas.
- Rs. 60,000 crore allocated for providing access to tap water to 3.8 crore households.
- A high-level committee for urban planners and economists to be formed for recommendations on urban capacity building, planning implementation, and governance.
- 5 existing academic institutions for urban planning to be designated as Centre for Excellence with an endowment fund of Rs 250 cr.
- Modern building by-laws will be introduced.
- A high-level panel to be set up for urban planning.
- Govt to promote the use of public transport in urban areas.
MSMEs & startups
- Rs 6,000 crore program to rate MSMEs to be rolled out over 5 years.
- MSMEs such as Udyam, e-shram, NCS & Aseem portals will be inter-linked, their scope will be widened.
- A fund with blended capital raised under the co-investment model facilitated through NABARD to finance startups in agriculture & rural enterprises for farm produces value chain.
- Startups will be promoted for Drone Shakti.
- PE/VC invested Rs 5.5 lakh crore in the startup, an expert committee will be set up to suggest measures to help attract investment.
- Existing tax benefits for startups, which were offered redemption of taxes for 3 consecutive years, to be extended by 1 more year.
- Govt to pay Rs 2.37 lakh crore towards procurement of wheat and paddy under MSP operations.
- Railways will develop new products for small farmers and MSMEs.
- Kisan Drones for crop assessment, land records, spraying of insecticides are expected to drive a wave of technology in the Agri sector.
- Ken Betwa river linking project worth Rs 44,605 crore announced.
- Draft DPRs for 5 river links have been finalized.
- Battery swapping policy to allow EV charging stations for automobiles will be framed.
- The private sector will be encouraged to create sustainable and innovative business models for battery and energy as a service, improving the efficiency in the EV ecosystem.
- One class, one TV channel’ program of PM eVIDYA will be expanded from 12 to 200 TV channels.
- This will enable all states to provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1 to 12.
- 1-Class-1-TV Channel to be implemented to provide supplementary education to children to make up for the loss of formal education due to Covid.
Finance & inclusion
- Rs 1 lakh crore financial assistance to states to be provided in 2022-23 to catalyse investments.
- Proposed to introduce Digital Rupee by RBI using blockchain technology, starting 2022-23.
- Digital Rupee to be rolled out by 2023.
- 100% of 1.5 lakh post offices will come on the core banking system, enabling financial inclusion and access to accounts through net banking, mobile banking, ATMs, and also providing online transfer of funds between post office accounts and bank accounts.
- IBC amendments to enhance the efficiency of the resolution process.
- Facilitate cross-border insolvency resolution.
- 75 digital banks in 75 districts will be set up by scheduled commercial banks to encourage digital payments.
- An open platform for the national digital health ecosystem will be rolled out.
- It will consist of digital registries of health providers and health facilities, unique health identity and universal access to health facilities.
- 95 percent of 112 aspirational districts have made significant progress in health, infra.
- For mental health counseling, a National Tele Mental Health Program will be launched.
- Spectrum auction will be conducted in 2022 for the rollout of 5G.
- Scheme for design-led manufacturing to be launched for 5G ecosystem as part of PLI scheme to enable affordable broadband and mobile communication in rural and remote areas.
- Contracts for laying optical fiber in villages to be awarded under BharatNet project under PPP in 2022-23.
- Datacenter and energy storage system to be given infrastructure status; move to provide easy financing.
Ease of Business
- 75,000 compliances have been eliminated and 1,486 union laws repealed to make it easier for businesses.
- Voluntary exit for corporates to be cut down to 6 months from 2 years.
- Govt committed to reducing imports and promoting self-reliance in the defence sector.
- 68 percent of the capital for the defence sector is to be earmarked for local industry.
- Defence R&D will be opened up for industry, startups, and academia with 25% of the defence R&D budget.
- Private industry will be encouraged to take up the design and development of military platforms and equipment in collaboration with DRDO and other organizations through the SPV model.
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