Need to put emphasis on ‘Innovate in India’

For some time now, India Inc has been looking for direction and action from policy makers to get our growth trajectory…

Top View by Satish Reddy, Chairman, Dr Reddy’s

For some time now, India Inc has been looking for direction and action from policy makers to get our growth trajectory back on track and do things to revitalise the investment climate in the country. I believe that the Budget presented by finance minister Arun Jaitley has all the makings of realising these expectations.

There are many positives to take away from what one heard in his Budget speech and I am optimistic that much of what was announced is just what is needed to bolster the economy and send it back on a growth path. A clear timeline for implementation of GST, for example, is a step that has been long overdue. The ‘Make in India’ campaign of Prime Minister Narendra Modi will get some added impetus through the reduction on custom duties that was announced.

It is well known that India’s infrastructure has a lot of catching up to do, if it is to support the ambitions growth targets. Towards this objective, the additional outlay of Rs 70,000 crore for infrastructure and the governments plans to provide an additional 4,000 MW of power through new projects, are more than welcome steps.

In respect to the reduction on corporate tax, apart from what the FM said about providing domestic industry with a competitive edge, I am also of the opinion that it will go a long way in rationalising tax administration, since it talks about doing away with things like exemptions. I was happy with certain aspects of the budget that seemed to suggest an intent to get India on par with globally accepted practices. Once such item was to bring in a new bankruptcy law to replace current archaic processes such as BIFR. These are definitely steps in right direction.

In an overall optimistic budget, the one disappointing aspect for me was the mention of a very meager Rs 150 crore to set up a fund to fuel innovation. This is simply way too inadequate, particularly from a pharma industry perspective. I was hopeful that investment on innovation and research would find far more favour in the budget, since, in my opinion, we need to emphasise equally on “Innovate in India”.

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First published on: 01-03-2015 at 01:12 IST