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Budget Expectations: Funds needed for startups, SMEs say industry experts

We are also hoping that the flagship programmes proposed by the government like the Make in India, Digital India are taken to the next level. Policy measures and enhanced budget should be announced to strengthen these initiatives.

pune Updated: Jan 30, 2018 22:08 IST
Prachi Bari
An industrial workshop at Bhosari, MIDC in Pune on Tuesday.
An industrial workshop at Bhosari, MIDC in Pune on Tuesday.(HT PHOTO)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ saw a lot of movement from the Indian companies and business with a boost to startup ventures opening up the market in a big way. The entrepreneurs have expressed that the upcoming budget will be in continuation of the policies to boost the startup sector.

“ We are optimistically looking forward to the budget, hoping that there would be continuation of reforms and policies to move further ahead in the ranking of ease of doing business. This is more important from the perspective of Make in India, making Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) more competitive. The growing exports in the last few months is a good sign and in order to keep up the momentum export processing, incentivise and strengthening of port facilities needs to be taken up in the budget with appropriate funding,” said Pramod Chaudhari, president, Mahratta Chamber of Commerce Industries and Agriculture (MCCIA).

Chaudhari stressed on the need for encouragement of SMEs with government providing more support and incentives for them to take up this. Industrial infrastructure also needs revamping and strengthening and since it is a part of infrastructure segment ,some allocation needs to be considered for the same, he added.

Chaudhari also said that employment generation needs immediate attention and in this direction skill development needs to be made more broad-based. “Here also the SME segment, which could generate more employment, can be roped in with incentives to skill their own employees . This skilled labour can be directly absorbed by the industries. This will generate employment as well increase productivity of the manufacturing units. We hope that enough funds are dedicated to support skill development initiatives and existing institutions,” he said.

We are also hoping that the flagship programmes proposed by the government like the Make in India, Digital India are taken to the next level. Policy measures and enhanced budget should be announced to strengthen these initiatives. New emerging field in the arena of renewable energy, biofuels “has the potential to create new entrepreneurs especially from the agriculture sector. The government should provide startup capital to initiatives like this.”

Vidyadhar Purandare, secretary, SEAP (Software Exporters Association Of Pune), said, “We look upon the central government to consider at par status for the STPI industry with SEZ industry.. EOU/STPI/EHTP industry demands extension of exemption of basic customs duty and IGST, while importing of capital goods, which is available till March 31st, 2018 (as of now). The IT industry is a compliant industry and looks upon ease of doing business at grassroots. This industry has a different set of practices and operations, hence, GST council should look into this aspect too. We, as an industry are positive and look forward to a great budget.”

Speaking to an entrepreneur, Siddharth Deshmukh, founder and CEO, Shimbi Labs, said, “I have three simple expectations from the next union budget - one for early-stage startups complete tax waver for three years. Two -reduce corporate taxes to 20% which is at the same level as the US and Japan. Third, if Startup India has to be really successful, completely remove the need to get startup certified by any agency, let the market decide if the startup is innovative or not. It's not the government’s job to determine what is good or bad innovation.”