Union Budget 2019 – Key Highlights

Honorable Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, presented her maiden Budget Today. It can be said that the Budget largely focused on making India a $ 5 trillion economy at a fast pace. The key focus remained on Women-led Initiatives – Self Help Groups, Education, Infrastructure, Housing, Insurance, NBFCs, MSMEs, Start-Ups, Make In India,  PSBs Recap, Making India – A harmonized and hassle-free investment destination for FPIs.

Below is the compilation of the Key Highlights of Budget 2019:

  1. Local Sourcing Norms for FDI to be eased for single brand retailing sector
  2. Swachh Bharat Mission has touched the very conscious of the nation, to expand it to undertake solid waste management in every village
  3. Under Pradhan Mantri Grameen Digital Saksharta Abhiyan Bharat Net is targeting internet connectivity in local bodies in every panchayat in the country, this will be speeded under Universal Service Obligation Fund
  4. Electronic Fund Raising Platform – a social stock exchange to be set up to list social enterprises and voluntary organizations working for social welfare objectives
  5. Railways to be encouraged to invest more in sub-urban railways through SPV structures such as Rapid Regional Transport System, more PPP initiatives to be encouraged in rail sector
  6. Budget 2019 proposes to establish a National Research Foundation to fund, co-ordinate and promote research in the country
  7. Jalshakti Mantralaya will work with states to ensure Har Ghar Jal for all rural houses by 2024 under Jal Jeevan Mission
  8. India will be made Open Defecation Free on October 2, 2019. To mark this occasion Rashtriya Swachhata Kendra to be inaugurated at Rajghat on the same day. Gandhipedia too to be developed to spread positive Gandhian Values
  9. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana Phase 3 envisaged to upgrade 1.25 lakh km of road length at an estimated cost of ₹ 80,250 crores
  10. 100 new clusters to be set up in 2019-20 under SFURTI which will enable 50,000 artisans to join economic value chain.
  11. Exclusive TV Programme for startups to be started. Channels will be designed and executed by Start-Ups themselves
  12. New National Educational Policy to be brought in to transform Indian Educational System; major changes higher as well as school system to be brought in
  13. Multiple labour laws to be streamlined into a set of 4 labour codes to standardize registration and filing of returns and reduce disputes
  14. An amount of ₹ 400 crores has been provided under the head – World Class Institutions for the year 2019-20
  15. Broadbased committee to evaluate and suggest actions for moving forward on gender analysis of budget to be formed
  16. The government aims to bring greater ease of living in the lives of its citizens
  17. Massive programme of Railway station modernization to be launched this year
  18. To popularize sports at all levels, education board for development of sportspersons to be set up under Khelo India
  19. Stand Up India will be continued for the entire period co-inciding with the 15th Finance commission i.e. 2020-25
  20. One woman in every SHG shall be made eligible for a loan of ₹ 1 lakh under Mudra Scheme
  21. Every verified woman SHG member having a Jan Dhan account, will be allowed an overdraft of ₹ 5000
  22. To further encourage women entrepreneurship, Women SHG Interest Subvention Programme to be expanded to all districts in India
  23. 4 new embassies to be opened in 2019-20 to improve footprints of India’s overseas presence and to provide better public services to local Indian communities
  24. Mission for Integrating Traditional Artisans and their creative products with global markets to be launched; patents and geographical indications to be obtained for them where necessary
  25. Public sector banks to be provided ₹ 70,000 crores to boost capital and improve credit
  26. PSB’s will use technology enabling customers of one PSB to access service across all PSBs
  27. Indian Developmental Assistance Scheme to be revamped during current financial year
  28. For the purchase of high rated pooled assets of financially sound NBFCs amounting to ₹ 1 lakh crores during 2019-20, one time 6-month partial credit guarantee to be given to PSBs
  29. Aadhaar Card for NRIs with Indian Passports to be issued after their arrival in India without waiting for the mandatory 180 days
  30. Regulation authority over Housing Finance sector to be returned from National Housing Bank to RBI
  31. Proposals for strengthening regulatory authority of RBI over NBFCs have been made
  32. ₹ 100 lakh crores to be invested in infrastructure sector over next 5 years. Expert committee to be set up to recommend structure and flow of funds through Development Finance Institutions
  33. Net owned fund requirements to be reduced from ₹ 5000 crores to ₹ 1000 crores to facilitate onshoring of international insurance transactions and enable opening of branches by foreign reinsurers
  34. considering going below 51% to an appropriate level of ownership stake in non-financial public sector undertakings on case by case basis
  35. Strategic divestment of Central Public Sector Enterprises will continue to be a priority. Strategic divestment of Air India will re-initiate. ₹ 1.05 lakh crores is the divestment target for 2019-20
  36. Investment Option in ETFs on the lines of Equity Linked Trading Scheme to be offered to encourage Long term investment in CPSEs
  37. will start raising a part of its gross borrowing programme in external markets in external currencies
  38. All companies having annual turnover of ₹ 400 crores will now be under the bracket of 25% Corporate Tax. This will cover 99.3% of all the companies
  39. A new series of coins of denominations of ₹ 1, ₹ 2, ₹ 5, ₹10 and ₹ 20 will be made available for public shortly
  40. Lower Corporate Tax Rate of 25% applicable only to companies with annual turnover of ₹ 250 crores
  41. Scheme to be launched to invite global companies to transparent competitive bidding, to set up mega manufacturing plants in sunrise and advanced tech areas such as solar electric charging infra and computer servers.
  42. Envision India to become the global manufacturing hub for electric vehicles
  43. Govt has already proposed GST Council to reduce tax rate from 12% to 5%, additional income tax deduction of ₹ 1.5 lakh on interest paid on loans taken to purchase electric vehicles
  44. To provide further impetus to affordable housing, additional deduction of ₹ 1.5 lakh on interest paid on loans borrowed upto 31-03-2020 for purchase of house upto ₹ 45 lakhs
  45. Several Direct Tax incentives to be provided to International Financial Services Centre to incentivize IFSCs.
  46. Relief on levy of STT to be provided
  47. PAN and Aadhaar to be made interchangeable for convenience of taxpayers, Income tax returns can now be filed using Aadhaar number, if PAN Card is not available.
  48. Faceless Income Tax assessment in electronic mode involving no human interface to be launched this year in phased manner, to reduce taxpayer harassment.
  49. Slew of measures to be taken to promote Digital Payments
  50. To discourage business payments in cash, TDS of 2% to be levied on cash withdrawal exceeding ₹ 1 crores in a year from a bank account
  51. Business establishments with annual turnover of more than ₹ 50 crores may offer low cost digital payments. No charges or merchant discount rates to be imposed on customers or merchants for these.
  52. Surcharge on individuals having taxable income form ₹ 2 crores to ₹ 5 crores and ₹ 5 crores and above to be enhanced, so the effective tax rate will increase by around 3% and 7% respectively.
  53. To resolve the angel tax issue, the start-ups and their investors who file requisite declaration and provide information in their return will not be subjected to any kind of scrutiny in respect of valuation of share premiums
  54. Simplifying GST – A simplified single monthly return being rolled out, taxpayers with annual turnover less than ₹ 5 crores need to file only quarterly returns.
  55. Fully automated GST Refund module shall be implemented, multiple tax ledgers to be replaced by one. Invoice details to be captured in central system
  56. Defence Imports not manufactured in India exempted from basic customs duty
  57. Harmonized, Hassle-free investment experience for FPIs
  58. Special additional excise duty of ₹ 1 per litre on petrol and diesel for road and infrastructure
  59. Govt to invest widely in agricultural infrastructure segment
  60. Import duty on gold and precious metals increased to 12.5% from 10%, customs duty on gold and other precious metals increased by 2.5% to 12.5%
  61. FDI inflows remain robust despite global headwinds – FDI inflows $ 64.37 billion – 6% above previous year
  62. Customs Duty on certain parts of electric vehicles being exempted to promote e-mobility
  63. 5% customs duty being imposed on imported books to promote domestic publishing and printing industry
  64. Steps to be taken to Separate NPS trust from PFRDA to prevent conflict of interest, keeping in mind the wider interest of subscriber
  65. Legacy dispute resolution scheme to be introduced for quick closure of pending litigations from Pre-GST era
  66. Investment driven growth and employment generation form the cornerstone of Government’s vision of becoming a $5 trillion economy by 2024-25
  67. Increase in statutory limit for FPI investment in a company from 24% to sectoral foreign investment limit.
  68. Merger of NRI Portfolio Investment Scheme route with FPI route to provide NRIs seamless access to Indian equities
  69. Credit Guarantee Enhancement Corporation to be set up in 2019-2020

Source : Budget Speech of Finance Minister and Press Information Bureau Coverage

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