Finance Minister Arun Jaitley unveiled a budget to help the poor with hikes in government spending and cuts in taxes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to win back the sympathy of voters hit hard by his recent crackdown on "black money".
NEW DELHI India unveiled a budget on Wednesday to help the poor with hikes in government spending and cuts in taxes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to win back the sympathy of voters hit hard by his recent crackdown on "black money". | Video
More Budget 2017 headlines
NEW DELHI Prime Minister Narendra Modi has moved to clean up political funding with limits on cash donations and new "election bonds", but some politicians and election officials said the measures would have limited impact.
MUMBAI India stuck to a previously planned injection of $1.5 billion for state-owned banks in the coming financial year, disappointing hopes for a broader recapitalisation and fuelling concern that some may trim lending to keep afloat.
NEW DELHI India proposed on Wednesday exempting foreign firms from paying income tax on the local sale of oil on the ending of a strategic storage contract with the government, with a view to attracting more interest in leasing such facilities.
MUMBAI India's 2017/18 annual budget is "fiscally prudent," as it maintains the government's fiscal consolidation efforts and would lead to stable economic growth if implemented correctly, a Moody's analyst said on Wednesday.
NEW DELHI India unveiled a budget on Wednesday to help the poor with hikes in government spending and cuts in taxes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to win back the sympathy of voters hit hard by his recent crackdown on "black money". [nL4N1FM10J]
India's budget for the year to March 2018 offers hikes in government spending and cuts in taxes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi promises to help the poor and to win back the votes of those hit by his crackdown on "black money".
India will ramp up spending on rural areas, infrastructure and fighting poverty, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said as he unveiled his annual budget on Wednesday, adding the impact on growth from the government's cash crackdown would wear off soon.
NEW DELHI India's growth rate will slow by up to half a percentage point due to the government's decision to scrap high-value banknotes, the top finance ministry economist said on Tuesday, challenging independent estimates of a far bigger impact.
"The fiscal deficit of 3.2 percent missed the target, but laudable efforts nonetheless. Markets should love the lower net borrowing figure of 3.4 trillion rupees."
TIRTHANKAR PATNAIK, INDIA STRATEGIST MIZUHO BANK, MUMBAI
"Fiscal deficit of 3.2 percent is in-line with expectations. Bond markets or the debt markets will take it favourably. The quality of deficit has improved marginally."
DEVENDRA KUMAR PANT, CHIEF ECONOMIST INDIA RATINGS, NEW DELHI
"He (Jaitley) focused on the rural side more, and he has recognised that demonetisation had brought some hardship to people. So he's trying to mitigate that as much as possible, with some rural schemes and reduction in taxation for low income people."
SAMRAT DASGUPTA, CEO ESQUIRE CAPITAL INVESTMENT ADVISORS, MUMBAI
"The tone remains neutral with not so drastic surprises in terms of maintaining a sustainable fiscal consolidation roadmap. The 3.2 percent fiscal deficit target for FY17-18 is largely in line with the expectation & the same has already been factored in the bond yields."
SHAKTI SATAPATHY, FIXED-INCOME STRATEGIST AK CAPITAL, MUMBAI
"Affordable housing is a priority for this government and it was expected to get infrastructure status. With infrastructure status, developers can access foreign funds at a cheaper cost by way of debt and it will be a priority lending for banks as well. This should result into a progress in the sector. The fine print shall provide higher clarity."
HEMAL MEHTA, PARTNER DELOITTE HASKINS & SELLS LLP
MUMBAI India's debt and currency markets are closed on Tuesday for a public holiday. Trading will resume on Wednesday. Stock market, however, is open.