After the elections results, which are more or less presumed by many of us, Congress re-elected once more and come as a real winner. With its nuclear issue, fight with inflation, recession and international crude prices, the UPA government had done really good job.
Indian IT sector seeks strong and favorable decision for the sector, as the industry currently battling with recession and protectionism from international market. The software services and outsourcing industry expects the UPA government to increase spending on IT initiatives, education and infrastructure.
Within 45 days of forming the new Government, the UPA will present the regular Budget for the year 2009-10 with the basic objective of returning to the path of faster and more inclusive growth, which is so essential for fulfilling all our social and economic objectives. In that budget, Indian IT Inc wants some more from the new government at the centre:
1. The Indian IT sector wants to sustain industry’s growth through extension of tax benefits, particularly for SMEs; removal of biased and abrupt taxes like FBT, Service Tax rates. They require a uniform policy environment that enhances India’s competitiveness and will attract foreign investment. The sector wants the next government to take the decisive step for the introduction of a moderate goods and services tax (GST).
2. The sector seeks a tough stand against growing protectionism by Barack Obama.
3. As the government promises in its manifesto, implementation of unique identity card for each citizen using IT, to protect Indian co from foreign burn-outs. Hence, the sector wants to implement the scheme.
4. Also, the party promises to carry out a massive renewal of country’s extensive science and technology infrastructure and ensure that they attract and retain the best talent from India and abroad.
5. With the investment in the infrastructure, the industry also wants the government to implement a time-bound program for extending broadband to all villages to increase computer penetration. In its manifesto, INC promises to connect all villages to a broadband network in three years time.
6. Implement the nation-wide skill development program and leverage IT expertise both for enabling education and imparting employable skills that can be deployed in the industry.
7. Special focus on SMEs: The manifesto pledges a “new deal” for SMEs and for first-generation entrepreneurs by assuring them greater access to collateral-free credit, liberating them from the multiplicity of laws and forms, and freeing them from the clutches of inspectors.
Congress/India achievements in last five years
According to the Central Statistical Organization (CSO) the country’s economy is expected to grow at 7.1% in the 2008-09 financial year, which is the second highest in the world. This figure is 2% lower than the last fiscal (2007-08) which is 9.1%. The important point is that India is recording a growth of 9% and above for the last three years. The government already announced three stimulus packages so that the momentum of growth is maintained. Interest rates have been reduced.
Credit flows to industry have been encouraged and assured. The impact of these policies will be felt in the coming weeks and months. The government is firmly committed to maintaining high growth with low inflation, particularly in relation to prices of essential agricultural and industrial commodities.
Anuj Kumar/ITvoir Network