Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman delivered her 5th and final tranche of economic package announcement on Sunday.
After focusing on agriculture, migrant workers, farmers, MSMEs and other sectors, today she emphasised on issues like environment, health, education, businesses and COVID-19 and decriminalization of the Businesses Act.
Today, a total of 7 steps were outlined-
Step 1 – Rs 40,000 crore increase in allocation to MGNREGA to provide employment boost.
Step 2 – Ramping up the health reforms and initiatives:
A) Investments in rural areas to be increased. Preparing India for future pandemics. All districts to be strengthened with labs.
B) Technology-driven education will be focused on. Literary enhancement along with psychological support will be prime.
Step 3 – Further enhancement of ease of doing business through IBC (Insolvency and Bankruptcy code) related measures. Special insolvency resolution framework to be communicated soon. Insolvency threshold raised to 1 crore.
Step 4 – Decriminalize Companies Act defaults : Minor technical and procedural defaults will be decriminalized.
Step 5 – Ease of doing business for corporates: Direct listing of securities by Indian public companies in permissible foreign jurisdiction.
Step 6 – All sectors will be open to private sectors also. A new coherent policy will be in place. Public sector enterprises will continue to function, and their presence will be defined. In notified strategic sectors, not more than four enterprises will be allowed to function.
Step 7 – Supporting State Govt : Rs. 46,038 crore devolution of taxes was given fully as if budget estimates were valid. Other monetary support also extended. Borrowing increased from 3% to 5%. Apart from this, part of the borrowing will be linked to specific reforms. This will ensure sustainability, safeguard interests of the farmers, job creations and promote urban development.
FM Nirmala Sitharaman showed graphics slides with the exact break-up of the Rs 20 lakh crore incentives along with other packages announced.
Earlier, the following initiatives have already been taken-
• Health related steps taken so far for COVID-19 containment – already announced worth Rs. 15,000 crore. Leveraging IT.
• During the COVID-19, compliance is going to be a concern. Timely action was taken to reduce the compliance burden as per the Companies Act. Companies could conduct important meeting like board meetings virtually. Leveraging the strength of technology was used.
• Online education during COVID-19 was leveraged. Swayam Prabha and e-pathshaala were used.