Naresh Wadhwa, President and Country Manager – Cisco - India and SAARC:
The budget this year would have a broad appeal in India, with a significant focus on inclusive growth and development at all strata. The emphasis on infrastructure development – both urban and rural - is both highly visible and highly welcome. It is heartening to see the significant rise in the allocation towards social welfare.
The ‘National Clean Energy Fund’ will position India as a leading force in finding ways to combat the imminent energy crisis. It will also simultaneously encourage research and technology projects in the clean energy space.
The proposed provision to simplify the FDI (Foreign Direct investment) model followed in India is also a welcome measure.
With the noble intention of spurring R&D across sectors, this budget paves the way for tax reforms on in-house R&D expenses, and also on contributions made towards scientific research to associations, colleges, universities and other institutions.
While research and development gets a leg-up, higher education and corporate tax reform waits for its turn. The UIDA took the lead among e-infrastructure initiatives, and broadband roll-out and major e-governance projects still needs to be addressed.