New Delhi, Feb 2 : From an equity perspective, no new tax measures, focus on capital spending to boost infrastructure spend are the key positives, as per a post Budget note by IDFC Mutual Fund.
The use of Custom duty to “nudge/push” for domestic manufacturing is a clear extension of the ambitious PLI schemes announced over the last few quarters.
“This government, it appears, is determined to raise the share of manufacturing, while achieving the goal of India becoming a $5 trillion economy,” the note said.
“In past budgets, the devil has always been in the fine print. On that note, nothing alarming has yet been spotted! For now, let the beaten-up domestic cyclicals/’value’ sectors enjoy their time in the sun!,” it added.
The Budget is positive for the jewellery industry with customs duty on gold and precious metals decreased from 12.5 per cent to 10 per cent, this will enable volume growth.
It is also positive for domestic leather and leather product manufacturers as customs duty increased to 10 per cent from nil last year. Better pricing will enable further volume growth, it said.
“Misuse of EPF to earn ‘assured’ 8 per cent tax free return plugged. With EPF contribution up to Rs 2.5 lakh per annum exempt from tax,” the note said.
The Budget announced no tax returns for senior citizens of age 75 years and above who have only pension and interest income. To ease compliance for taxpayers, Income Tax returns will have pre filled data from capital gains also.
As part of the phased manufacturing plan for electronics products and components similar to last budget, they continue to see custom duty hikes. Compressor (AC, Refrigerators) from 12.5 per cent to 15 per cent — most of the compressors for AC/Refrigerators are imported (less than 20 per cent is domestic manufacturing). This is aimed to spur domestic manufacture of this vital component, given the large capital spend required, hiking Custom Duty offers ‘protection’ in initial years from well-established imports.
The note said the current Budget is a part of 3-4 mini Budgets announced post the ‘Aatmanirbhar’ package since May 2020 to sustain recovery. The focus of the current Budget was to balance fiscal prudence with judicious spends to sustain the incipient recovery in the economy.
As part of this exercise, off-balance sheet items (loans to Food Corporation of India (FCI) are now a part of the regular budget and hence improve the quality of fiscal math, it added.