Ashish Bhasin, CEO, APAC and Chairman, India – Dentsu Aegis Network
I think this is a good budget in some ways because it has attempted to put money in the hands of the middle class through rationalisation of tax rates as well as has concentrated on looking after the agricultural sector, including introduction of best practises like storage for producers and other measures.
However, I do feel that the expectations from the budget were much more and it does feel like a bit of a missed opportunity.
While it is good to see that the dividend distribution tax has been abolished, I expected more on the rationalisation of direct taxes, particularly the cess introduced over and above the tax rates.
It is good to see efforts being made to encourage new-age skill development as well as helping the start-ups and what’s particularly interesting is the proposal to set up data centre farms all over the country. This will prepare India for the economy of tomorrow. It is also good to see attempts at simplification of taxation through digitisation but the proof of the pudding will lie in seeing its implementation on ground.
It would be fair to say that at best it is a mixed budget and while there are some encouraging decisions, enough does not seem to have been done for the situation the economy is in.