It’s aimed at boosting job creation in India

Moorthy K Uppaluri, CEO, Randstad India

The Union Budget 2015 gives a message of stability and continuity. It’s a progressive and well balanced budget that will lay the foundation of major structural changes in the Indian economy in the coming years. There has been greater emphasis on tax simplification; tax compliance and infrastructure spend which is the need of the hour. Reduction of corporate tax to 25% from 30% along with incentivising corporates through a revitalised PPP structure echoes a powerful vision. This Budget clearly reflects the focus of the Government which is to create new vehicles to attract private sector investment and this is definitely in the right direction.

The effort to promote technology-based entrepreneurship is laudable. The Government has taken a step forward to encourage new startups and entrepreneurship in the country by allocating Rs. 1000 crore to enable IT based start-ups.

The FM rightly states that, India's youth should be job creators and not job seekers and hence initiatives towards ‘Ease of doing business in India’, seems to be more realistic and achievable.

Promotion of the MSME sector has also been a priority for this Budget. Making current loans refinanced for this segment, will enable job creation.
 
It’s a huge temptation for expansion of the present MSME segment to think differently. For the 5.77 crore small business units that are mostly individual proprietorships, running small manufacturing and training businesses, this initiative has the potential to be a key job creator in the long term.

Additionally, the impetus given to R&D, incubation and entrepreneurship in this Budget is heartening. So is the support for innovation through the ‘Atal Innovation Mission’. If administered well, these steps can act as a force multiplier for both “Make in India” and for employment generation.

The government has brought a much-needed relief to the human resources sector as well by announcing concrete measures and allocations to continue their focus on skill development and vocational training. The initiative of launching an integrated ‘National Skill Mission’ is a welcome move, which has a potential to develop employability of the youth, especially below 25 years of age. Further, the education welfare scheme ‘NayiManzil’ for unemployed minority youth will bring confidence amongst the youth and boost employment.

Introducing flexibility on the EPF and ESI front, by making these optional for employees is going to be a key factor in motivating the Indian workforce to join the formal sector and curb the growth of informal workforce. This move will give the workforce more power to decide how their salaries need to be utilized.

The move to set up new IITs, IIMs and medical colleges and the emphasis on quality education, innovation, research & development will ensure skilled youth, that will bridge the demand & supply gap faced by the industry.

Finally, since there was no mention of reforms in labour laws, a key aid for doing business and key indicator for attracting funds from international markets, we will await announcements in this regard post-budget.

Continuous improvement and inclusive growth is more important than a ‘Big Bang Budget’. Most businesses and even nations fail, not because of lack of planning, but because of lack of execution. We are hoping for the best execution of what is planned in the Budget, and then double-digit growth is sure to be a reality.

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