The Union Budget 2023 evoked mixed reactions from the Indian IT channel industry leaders with a majority of them seeing it as a positive and lauded the Budget as one with vision, structure and discipline that holds immense promise for technology development and skilling.
The Budget with its slew of announcements like Centers of Excellence for Artificial Intelligence, one hundred labs for 5G applications in engineering institutions are very positive steps taken to spur breakthrough innovations in the field of education, agriculture, transport, and healthcare. Further, an impetus to R&D for startups and academia that utilizes data for their growth will be secured under National Data Governance Policy (NDGFP).
Jyoti Bhagat of CRN India speaks to leading IT distributors, partners and dealers’ associations for taking their Budget perspectives. Following are some reactions from IT partners on the Budget presented by the finance minister.
Executive Director and CFO of Ingram Micro’s Prabhakar Iyer informs, “FM has taken very good measures for boosting consumption in terms of money made available in the hands of the public and good investments in Infra projects will boost the economy and the demand across all sectors. Reduction in compliances and relaxation of regulatory provision is a welcome move.
Infra expenditure will boost economy growth and consumption helping across all sectors. Credit guarantee scheme for MSME will help growth of this sector. While the reduction in tax rate and rationalization of tax rate across slabs is a welcoming measure. This will help middle class spending. Overall, the budget is 9 out of 10.”
Calling it a ‘Progressive’ Budget, Rajiv Srivastava, Managing Director, Redington Limited says the budget is focussed on green growth will have a multiplier effect on the industrial sustainability. “We welcome the progressive initiatives announced in the Union Budget 2023, focusing on Artificial Intelligence, 5G, youth skilling, Green Growth, data governance, consumer empowerment, and customs duty relief for mobile phone components—all these initiatives will help intensify the focus on making India a skill capital for the world, a consumption growth economy.
The budget’s focus on green growth will have a multiplier effect on industrial sustainability, leading to the country’s goal of net-zero carbon emission by 2070. Overall, the first budget of Amrit Kaal lays the foundation for a developed India by providing a framework of growth and development through Skilling, Green Energy, R&D, and Technology, which will accelerate the country’s journey to becoming a $10 Trillion economy in the near future.
Noida-based cloud solution provider, Prateek Garg, MD & Founder, Progressive Infotech believes it is a ‘Stellar’ Budget for the country given a massive increase in government CAPEX in all sectors with more money in the hands of the individual taxpayer. It provides the architecture for the next generation reforms and improving all social sectors with creation of more jobs. All this augurs well for the technology industry as digital transformation remains the central theme of all this. We are very excited at the opportunity in front of us.
The budget will bring economic stability according to Delhi-based Gurpreet Singh, MD, Arrow PC Network. With a focus on creating a technology and knowledge-driven economy. Vision towards making India an artificial intelligence (AI) hub is another big step towards a digital and smart nation. Simplifying the KYC process and using PAN as a common identifier across all digital systems in government agencies will surely facilitate the ease of doing business.
In view of the National IT Channel Association, FAIITA President, Devesh Rastogi, the budget has lifted the sentiments of MSMEs. Income Tax Return to be finalised in 16 days and Credit Guarantee Scheme are some of the welcoming decisions which will spur the small and medium business owners. Rastogi adds, “The IT industry digitisation will give new boost to IT enabled services and hardware and Make in India brands.”
Another partner from Hyderabad echoes the same sentiment. According to KV Jagannath, MD, Choice Solutions, “It is an encouraging budget for IT business owners. It is time for IT partners to evaluate and innovate into new technologies. The income tax benefits with the new tax regime is a good move.”
The various tax incentives have further cheered the IT channel. Chandigarh-based, Sulalit Gupta, Partner, Global Systems says, “The Budget is growth oriented. Tax incentives to industries will boost industrialization and bring more foreign exchange income. Change in personal tax slab is a welcome step by the government. It will help the middle-class segment and young workforce with spare income in hand.”
Sameer Parekh, Vice President, FAIITA wishes the indirect tax GST slabs be more considerable for the consumer for the commonly used products. We are hoping to lower the rates from 18% to 12% and from 12% to 5%.
Munesh Jadoun, Founder and CEO of ZNet expressed, the Indian Union Budget lays out a visionary roadmap for the country’s digital future, where the IT sector will play a critical role in shaping a technologically advanced and digitally inclusive nation. The outright focus on increasing the adoption of AI and emerging technologies by setting up 3 centres of excellence is a great initiative.
Dhiraj Vijayvargia, Managing Director, Priyam Infosystems pointed out, the budget proposes the creation of a National Recruitment Agency to streamline the recruitment process and reduce the unemployment rate among the youth. The government will also establish a new center of excellence in artificial intelligence and data analytics, which is expected to drive innovation in the IT sector.
The budget recognizes the importance of the IT sector in driving economic growth and creating jobs. The allocation of resources and initiatives aimed at boosting the sector are expected to have a positive impact on the development of the industry, added Vijayvargia.