Union Budget 2019 - Suman Chowdhury, President - rating at Acuité Ratings & Research Ltd
"Acuité Ratings believes that there are three important focus areas for the government in the Union Budget 2019-20. It intends to step up public investments and reinvigorate the economy with the proposal to deploy Rs. 100 lakh Cr in infrastructure sectors like roads, railways, power transmission, waterways and water management over the next 5 years. Secondly, it plans to strengthen the financial sector through measures such as further bank capitalisation of Rs. 70,000 Cr in the current year and better funding access to NBFCs through bank pool buyouts, supported by first loss guarantee up to 10%. It has also proposed to deepen the corporate bond market through the setting up of Credit Guarantee Enhancement Corporation and initiating corporate tripartite repo transactions. A separate electronic funding platform for the social sector and raising the minimum public holding to 35% from 25% will further provide buoyancy to the capital markets. Thirdly, there is a push for digitisation and technological innovations through disincentives on large cash withdrawals, incentives for faster rollouts of electric vehicles and launch of smart cards in urban transport systems. While the government proposes to raise additional revenues through higher incomes taxes on very high income groups and additional duties on fuel, it has provided tax relief to the small and mid-corporates by reducing the corporate tax rate to 25% for turnover up to Rs. 400 Cr."