“The announcement by the Honourable Finance Minister today to increase the capital expenditure on infrastructure is a welcome step, which would have a multiplier effect on the nation’s overall economy. The continued expansion of rural housing along with the proposal to develop three economic railway corridors under the PM Gati Shakti Yojana are other significant moves that will spur steel demand, create jobs, and improve connectivity & logistics. It is heartening to see the government’s emphasis on every region contributing to a ‘Viksit Bharat’ which is underscored by a special focus on the eastern part of the country. The financial support envisaged to promote research and innovation is an encouraging initiative which will help nurture the aspirations of our youth”, said TV Narendran, CEO&MD Tata Steel.

The interim budget commendably shunned any populist measures so often resorted to by the governments. But Bharat could certainly do more on its infrastructure CAPEX budgeting which increased nominally by 11 per cent. Some bold measures are needed to increase the annual FDI level of $60 billion further. The banking and power sector reforms coupled with further impetus on digital infrastructure are imperatives to Viksit Bharat with improved sovereign rating. Overall, stability and continuity with judicious acceleration are the wheels deployed through this interim budget for taking off this flight. Now, it’s over to July 2024, said Gopichand P. Hinduja, Chairman, the Hinduja Group.

“I would like to laud the Finance Minister for presenting a Budget that demonstrates India’s confidence as an economy of substance and immense promise, marching towards a Viksit Bharat on the pillars of exemplary governance, continuity of far-sighted reforms, consistency of vision and strategy and an unprecedented thrust on infrastructure development, sustainable and inclusive growth as well as technological excellence. The Budget builds on the extraordinary vision of the Hon’ble Prime Minister to spearhead an era of Amrit Kaal and positions India on the global stage as a shining example of socio-economic transformation, said Sanjiv Puri, Chairman & MD, ITC Limited.

“The Interim Budget 2024 lays a strong foundation for building a prosperous and inclusive India, in line with the vision of ‘Viksit Bharat’. We echo the sentiment of empowerment for every section of society, particularly the ‘Garib’, ‘Mahilayen’, ‘Yuva’, and ‘Annadata’. Their progress is intertwined with the nation’s advancement, and it’s heartening to see the government prioritise their needs and aspirations. The foresight outlined for the ‘Amrit Kaal’, anchored in ‘Reform, Perform, and Transform’, sets a promising trajectory for inclusive and sustainable growth. The emphasis on next-generation reforms, underscores a collective endeavour towards a prosperous future. We particularly welcome the emphasis on clean energy initiatives like bio-manufacturing and compressed biogas blending. These measures will not only address climate concerns but also create exciting new opportunities in the green sector. Overall, Budget 2024 strikes a positive balance between continuity and progress, laying down a roadmap towards development, fostering innovation, and nurturing a sustainable future for our nation by 2047,” said Nadir Godrej, Chairman and MD - Godrej Industries Ltd.

The Interim Budget is a clear and outcome-based continuum towards Viksit Bharat. It brings together growth, climate, and social empowerment, while maintaining a careful balance between current investment rate and fiscal discipline. Enabling states to adopt reforms for Viksit Bharat will seize the momentum created from the Centre towards Amrit Kaal. Focus on Blue Economy, expanding and strengthening the EV ecosystem, domestic tourism, and multi-modal logistics will propel India towards the vision of a developed nation by 2047. “The Interim Budget recognizes innovation as a key driver for growth through introduction of a significant corpus of ₹1 lakh crore for offering fifty-year interest free loan to scale up R&D in sunrise domains. The fiscal performance bodes well for country’s macroeconomic stability and investor confidence, said Anish Shah, President, FICCI

The Government’s efforts to boost India’s economy through structured policy reforms will accelerate the development of our Nation over the next few years. The steps taken by the Hon’able Finance Minister to empower the youth by fueling the entrepreneurial spirit and fostering innovation in technology through initiatives like the 1 lakh crore research corpus, creates a golden era for sunrise sectors such as media & entertainment. The combination of youth and technology certainly holds immense potential and can lead to exciting new opportunities for content distribution and monetization, boosting the growth of the M&E sector at large”, saidPunit Goenka, MD & CEO, ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd.

I believe, with this Union Budget FY24-25, the Government and the Honorable Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman, have taken strides towards realizing the vision of making India, a Viksit Bharat by 2047. The substantial increase in capital expenditure allocation to an impressive ₹11.11 trillion underscores a continued commitment to strengthen the country’s infrastructure, generate long-term employment opportunities, and drive overall economic growth. The interim budget’s focus on fiscal prudence, targeting a commendable fiscal deficit of 5.1 per cent of GDP for FY25, is noteworthy. To promote entrepreneurship and innovation, a corpus of ₹1 lakh crore is being established for low or nil-interestrate loans, encouraging the private sector to amplify research and innovation in emerging sectors. With a notable 50 per cent increase in average real income and moderate inflation, we stand closer to the vision of a developed India by 2047. Overall, the budget is quite bold in its aspirations and inclusive in its approach”, said Saugata Gupta, MD & CEO, Marico Limited.

This year’s Union Budget strikes a delicate balance between laying the groundwork for India’s bright future (Amrit Kaal) and emphasising responsible action (Kartavya Kaal). The significant increase in capital expenditure underscores the government’s unwavering commitment to addressing India’s core economic needs and boosting economic growth. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s continued focus on infrastructure development, coupled with her emphasis on inclusivity, carries far-reaching potential. This twin-pronged approach promises to propel India’s economic trajectory while ensuring equitable participation and social progress. The budget lays the foundation for a sustainable future, with inclusivity and innovation at its core, said Sanjeev Krishan, Chairperson, PwC in India.

The government has clearly laid out the fiscal deficit path for next two years, and this is one of the highlights of the interim budget. The tax to GDP ratio has improved which gives the confidence to spend more and is a major contributor to the glide path for fiscal deficit. Secondly, the continued focus on infrastructure and affordable housing is a big positiveOverall it’s a growth-oriented budget, said Venkatraman Venkateswaran, Group President & CFO, Federal Bank.

“The interim budget has laid out an affirmative action of fiscal glide path towards 4.5 per cent in FY26. The heartening news is that the anticipated tax buoyancy in FY24 excluding the outlier pandemic year is the highest in sevenyears. This apart, the budget has laid out reinforced architecture of big possibilities, creating an all-encompassing action-oriented roadmap to embark upon an arduous yet rewarding journey for each and every Indian, chiefly the fringe and hitherto vulnerable masses, entrepreneurs, agripreneurs and women, making them an equity holder in Viksit Bharat.” said Dinesh Khara, Chairman, State Bank of India.