NEW DELHI - India on Friday unveiled an interim budget with giveaways for rural citizens and the middle class, in what is being seen as a critical test for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is facing anger over depressed farm incomes and unemployment with a general election just months away.
Here are the highlights of interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal's budget for the 2019/20 fiscal year beginning April 1.
- Fiscal deficit for 2018/19 seen at 3.4 percent of GDP
- Fiscal deficit for 2019/20 estimated at 3.4 percent of GDP
- Fiscal deficit for 2020/21 seen at 3 percent of GDP
- Government's stated commitment earlier was to bring down the fiscal deficit to 3.1 percent of GDP by the end of March 2020, and to 3 percent by March 2021
- India's current account deficit for 2018/19 seen at 2.5 pct of GDP
- Debt to GDP ratio to be brought down to 40 percent by 2024/25
- Total expenditure in 2019/20 budgeted at 27.84 trillion rupees
- Capital expenditure for 2019/20 seen around 3.36 trillion rupees in centrally sponsored schemes
- Defence budget raised to beyond 3 trillion rupees in 2019/20
- To allocate 645.87 billion rupees for railways capital expenditure in 2019/20
- Allocation to India's northeast region proposed to be increased by 21 percent over previous fiscal year
- India to allocate 750 billion rupees ($10.56 billion) per year to support farmers' incomes
- Impact of 200 billion rupees in current fiscal year
- Vulnerable farmers to receive 6,000 rupees per year under new scheme
- Farmers affected by natural disasters to receive 2 percent interest subvention, additional 3 percent if they repay loans on time
- Government to provide 2 percent interest subvention for farmers pursuing animal husbandry, fisheries
- India to allocate 190 billion rupees for construction of rural roads in 2019/20
- India to launch social security coverage for workers in unorganised sector
- New scheme to provide assured monthly pension of 3000 rupees per month, with contribution of 100 rupees per month, for workers in unorganised sector after 60 years of age
- Scheme will benefit 100 million workers in unorganised sector, may become the world's biggest pension scheme for unorganized sector in five years - Goyal
- Government to allocate 600 billion rupees for a rural employment scheme in 2019/20
- Income tax exemption limit raised to 500,000 rupees in 2019/20
- Benefit of rollover of capital tax gains to be increased from investment in one residential house to that in two residential houses, for a taxpayer having capital gains up to 20 million rupees; can be exercised once in a lifetime
- Average monthly tax collection at 971 billion rupees per month so far this year
- Gross market borrowing seen at 7.04 trillion rupees in 2019/20 - traders citing agencies
- Small and medium-sized businesses registered under the Goods and Services Tax to get 2 percent interest subvention on loan of 10 million rupees - finance minister
- Goyal says expects other banks on the central bank's Prompt Corrective Action list to be removed soon
FINANCE MINISTER COMMENTS
- "We are poised to become a 5 trillion dollar economy in the next five years, we aspire to become a 10 trillion dollar economy in the next eight years"
- "India is now on the way to becoming a global manufacturing hub in several sectors"