With the government all set to deliver its last full budget before 2019 General elections, which is much awaited and anticipated because of being the first post GST budget of India, is the economy in its bounce back mode? Can the Union budget be both populist and pragmatic? These questions were given a platform to be deliberated upon and critically analysed on a Pre budget Discussion organized by Finesse: The Finance Club of IMNU on January 30th, 2018. The eminent speakers of the session were Dr. M. Mallikarjun, Dr. Nikunj Patel, Dr. Nisarg Joshi, Dr. Vishalkumar Jani, Prof. Dhyani Mehta and Prof. Nirmal C. Soni.
They discussed expectations from the budget on aspects such as
a) Improving macroeconomics variables,
b) Health sector development,
c) Impetus to stock markets,
d) Budget deficits and
e) 10 points of Economic Survey Report.
With the BFSI sector being in the eye of the storm over the last years due to rising NPAs and reducing ROE, the sector will definitely get a special focus from FM in this budget. The social sector has been low on budget priority because of political agendas, this year’s budget is also expected to have only a narrow increase in funds for health and education, according to the speakers. The 3 per cent fiscal deficit target was argued to be no more sacrosanct due to the two major policy shocks. Since sustainable growth will not be a target of this year’s budget so a rise in deficit due to the expenditure increase is plausible. The conclusion of the talk was that the growth projection of 7-7.5% is dependent on stability of West Asia which determines the crude prices and the monsoon of 2018. The students and faculty alike had opined that the troublesome period of GST is over and its roll out will start bearing fruits in this fiscal.
This article is contributed by Prakriti Dutta~
Picture Courtesy: Pratikriti- The Photography Club