Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget 2023 on February 1 in the Lok Sabha. The budget lays emphasis on technology development with continued push towards Digital India. In her speech, the finance minister said that the government’s ‘vision for the Amrit Kaal includes a technology-driven and knowledge-based economy with strong public finances, and a robust financial sector’.
Various Industry experts from different fields related directly or indirectly to technology, presented there views on the Union Budget. Here’s what they had to say:
MAIT is also highly appreciative of the Seven priorities set in the budget by the government in terms of ‘Saptarishi’, which are inclusive development, reaching the last mile, infrastructure & investment, unleashing the potential, green growth, youth power & financial sector for guiding the nation through the Amrit Kaal.
The exemption, extension & reduction in custom duty on import of some mobile phone components, along with TV panels and EV will further propel manufacturing in the nation.
MAIT aligns itself with the Govt’s initiative on Strengthening MSMEs. The Credit Guarantee Fund Scheme for MSMEs revamped with infusion of Rs 9,000 Crore corpus & reduction in Cost of Credit by about 1%, totally reiterates the Hon’ble PM vision of Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas.
Extension of Income tax benefit for startups for 1 more year will empower and encourage Startup ecosystem in India.
Capital outlay being increased steeply for the third year in a row by 33% to ₹10 Lakh Crore, is a major development & we envision this having a positive multiplier effect on the economy.
MAIT congratulates Hon’ble FM for tabling the spectacular budget, and it will help making India as a global manufacturing hub.
We eagerly await the announcement for PLI for IT H/w 2.0 & Components and sub-assemblies & the Data Centre Policy for India.
Jagdish Mitra, Chief Strategy Officer & Head of Growth, Tech Mahindra
It is a very positive budget from a technology sector perspective, as it sets the right message about 5G labs, setting up AI centre of excellence and the focus around skilling, which is absolutely the key need for the country as we live through the Prime Minister’s vision on TechAde and technology being the core enabler. From a business perspective, steps around ease of doing business have been taken and I think that’s commendable. I would like to congratulate the Finance Minister and the government.
Nitin Varma, Managing Director, India & SAARC, CrowdStrike
The 2023 Union Budget holds immense promise for technology development and skilling. Today, developing new skills is essential for various industries with new and emerging technologies. In particular, cybersecurity is a field that is constantly evolving and requires regular upskilling through advanced training programs. In the recent years, we have seen a significant rise in cyberattacks, however, many organizations are struggling with skill gap and resource crunch. It is encouraging to see that infrastructure and investment as well as youth power are main priorities as these are closely aligned with dynamic industry needs. Investments in infrastructure will have a large multiplier impact on growth and employment, leading to ramping up the virtuous cycle of investment and job creation. The government’s decision to formulate the National Education Policy, focused on skilling will facilitate job creation at scale. The digital ecosystem for skilling will be further expanded with the launch of a unified Skill India Digital platform for enabling demand-based formal skilling. The proposed Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 4.0 meant for skilling youth shall entail new age courses for Industry 4.0 like coding, AI, robotics, soft skills etc. It is a great incentive keeping in mind the importance of skilling, upskilling and reskilling in the present scenario. Another emerging technology today is Artificial Intelligence. The three proposed centres of excellence for Artificial Intelligence too is a good opportunity for industry players to partner in interdisciplinary research, develop cutting-edge applications and scalable problem solutions. These initiatives will pave the way for building a workforce that will be skilled and ahead of the curve in their respective industry.
Ankita Dabas, Chief Growth Officer, Veative Group
The budget brings laser sharp focus to AI led skill-development by announcing the establishment of three centres of artificial intelligence. Foreseeing the spurt in AI based employment opportunities in the future, Veative Group has devoted 1 million+ manhours over the past decade to create a digital ecosystem in AR/VR, applications for training and development, along with making educational content in VR available globally. We are all set to launch the world’s first careers metaverse in July 2023 that promises to connect enterprises with school-going learners. We wholeheartedly support the govt in making India a leading digital force of reckoning in the world.
Tarun Kumar Taunk – Informatic Computech Pvt. Ltd.
“Union Budget 2023-24 brings out surely brings out positivity in terms of technology’s perspective, starting from establishing many 5G Labs, excellence centers for Artificial Intelligence, “Credit Guarantee Scheme” for MSME, along with collateral loans, could really help underfunded MSMEs.
The automotive sector could also gain attention as a scheme for replacing old polluting vehicles comes into play. From enabling improvement for eKYCs to allocating more opportunities for industrial projects, each and every sector of the working industry could help benefit from Budget 2023, bringing growth in technology sector along with taking care green and renewable energy.
All and all, steps have been taken to give more room to business to grow and create an impact in their respective working industry, and I would like to congratulate Govt. of India and Nirmala Sitharaman Ji for presenting the Union Budget 2023, and taking the necessary steps.”
Raj Koneru, CEO of Kore.ai
The AI-focused announcements in the 2023 budget are very welcoming and encouraging. A move towards creating Centres of Excellence for Artificial Intelligence to unleash the potential of our economy and realize the vision of “Make AI in India and Make AI Work for India” is very exciting. As we had hoped for a collaboration with industries like banking, health, agriculture, and government to use AI-enabled solutions is an encouraging move indeed. While we are very delighted to see the keen focus on AI technology innovation, adoption, and growth in India by the government in this budget, it would have been encouraging to see some incentives and tax relaxations for AI-focused startups.