Finance Minister emphasized on an investment-driven growth model to achieve the goal of 5 Trillion dollar economy. She stated that the Government recognizes that investment-driven growth requires access to low cost capital. It is estimated that India requires investments averaging Rs. 20 lakh crores every year (USD 300 billion a year).
Further, the Finance Minister stated that it is estimated that Railway Infrastructure would need an investment of Rs. 50 lakh crores between 2018-2030. She proposed to use Public-Private Partnership to unleash faster development and completion of projects and to make available a blueprint this year for developing National Highway Grid, gas grids, water grids, i-ways, and regional airports.
Focusing on unlocking the true potential of Public Sector Undertakings, Finance Minister said that strategic disinvestment of select CPSEs would continue to remain a priority of this Government, along with consolidation of PSUs in the non-financial space. Government is considering, in case where the Undertaking is still to be retained in Government control, to go below 51% to an appropriate level on case to case basis. Government is setting an enhanced target of Rs. 1,05,000 crore of disinvestment revenue for the financial year 2019-20, she added.
To prepare India’s youth to also take up jobs overseas, Finance Minister said that the Government will increase focus on skillsets needed abroad including language training. Focus would be laid on new-age skills like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things, Big Data, 3D Printing, Virtual Reality and Robotics, which are valued highly both within and outside the country, and offer much higher remuneration.
Further in her Budget Speech, Finance Minister also proposed to start a television programme within the DD bouquet of channels exclusively for start-ups, discussing issues affecting their growth, matchmaking with venture capitalists and for funding and tax planning.
Regarding Industry sector, Finance Minister stated that under the Interest Subvention Scheme for MSMEs, Rs. 350 crore has been allocated for FY 2019-20 for 2% interest subvention for all GST registered MSMEs, on fresh or incremental loans. Government will create a payment platform for MSMEs to enable filing of bills and payment thereof on the platform itself. Further, the Government is proposing to streamline multiple labour laws into a set of four labour codes, which is expected to reduce disputes, she added.