Budget 2016: I feel that at this point the impact of Digital India or Make in India is only in the media. It is not just about removing red tape and corruption; the real situation on ground hasn’t changed much. The global outlook is also gloomy at present, as the industry is saddled with high debt. The stock market and regular investment options are not giving good returns. Unemployment and hidden underemployed is at an all-time high.
In such a strained business environment, the 4th industrial revolution in the form of robotics can help revitalize the flagging global market. I feel the Government must provide long-term fiscal incentives to attract global investment in robotics to India. The infrastructure of high speed web has to be built at the cheapest cost so that smart IOT appliances can perform to their true potential and solve our everyday issues. Even the ecosystem of chips and other important components has to be built to match the global standards. This will ensure that world scale manufacturing of finished products moves to India in the longer term.
Moreover, a move must be made to steamroll the GST bill through at any cost, as it will lead to a greater ease of doing business. Even if the bill is passed today, its impact on businesses will only be seen after 12 to 18 months. Therefore, the Government must take up the matter of the GST bill on an urgent basis. The local direct and indirect taxes account for 30 to 40 percent currently; as such, a move will have to be made to reduce these taxes to half in order to support businesses within the country.
The 4th industrial revolution is right around the corner in form of robotics. Let us have a national plan to capitalize fully on it.
Written by Rajeev Karwal, Founder and CEO, Milagrow