Budget Date: The first time after 2015-16, the budget will be presented on a Saturday, February 1, 2020. The Modi government shifted the budget announcement date from March to February in order to have a better implementation of the budget presented. This gives the government 12 months to exercise the expenditure starting from April 1 as the process related to the budget will be completed by March 31.
Parliament’s Budget Session:
The government has decided to hold the budget in two phases this year: January 31 to February 11 and March 2 to April 2. There is a 19-day gap between the two phases which will provide the time to the government to think about the demands of various Ministries and Departments. The budget session this time will be stressful as topics like the economic slowdown and Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) will be discussed.
When compared to last year, India was the fastest-growing country in the world. But during the third quarter, India’s GDP grew only by 4.5% when compared from last year. Moreover, consumer confidence is the lowest since 2014. The unemployment rate reached a 45-year high of 6.1%. The rate cuts done by the RBI have not been properly transferred into the economy.
The challenge here is to restore the twin engines of growth: investment and consumption.
Things were done so far:
In September, the government has announced few fiscal measures costing approximately, Rs. 1.45 lakh crore and will focus on the reduction of fiscal deficit. There has been a corporate base tax rate cut to 22% from 30% and for manufacturing companies who will start its operations after October 1, 2019, but before March 31, 2020, to 15% from 20%. RBI has reduced the interest rates by 135 bps in the past one year. Moreover, in order to boost the growth of start-ups, the government decided to do away with the ‘angel tax’ only for the companies which were registered with the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade.