The Union Budget for 2021-22 had a monumental directive — to provide an effective boost to demand, while simultaneously supporting the economic structure as we continue to fight the pandemic.
The measures charted out by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman are well-balanced, including investment behind health care, vaccination, and development of physical infrastructure.
The Budget has prioritised spending in order to revive the economy, despite limited fiscal headroom. It has also detailed inclusive development plans for the agricultural sector that should help in sustaining the momentum of rural growth.
With a robust six-pillared strategy, the Budget for 2021-22 has taken a multi-pronged approach to incentivise consumption and investment opportunities.
With a strong focus on building the rural and urban infrastructure as well as manufacturing, it shows the government’s commitment towards bringing products made in India to the global stage.
The government is also creating job opportunities for the skilled youth.
Providing an additional boost to employment, Sitharaman’s third Budget has expanded the application of minimum wages to all categories of workers. It has also extended protection to women, giving them the impetus to work in all sectors.
The Budget has an encouraging capital infusion in infrastructure, funded through prudent borrowing, divestment and restructuring of allocations.
Having said that, a flawless execution of the disinvestment process and increasing tax compliance will be key.
With an Atmanirbhar Bharat at the core, the Narendra Modi government has signalled that while working hard to fight the pandemic, it has not lost sight of its ambitious goal of becoming a $5-trillion economy.