Corporate India, on Thursday, urged the Modi 3.0 government to stay focused on its public capex-led growth strategy that in the recent years prioritised investments in infrastructure in the upcoming full Budget for 2024-25. 

They also wanted the government to substantially increase allocations towards education and healthcare besides raising the income-tax exemption slab to ₹5 lakh from the existing ₹3 lakh to enhance disposable income of middle class.

At the pre-Budget meeting with industry associations here on Thursday, industry representatives also pitched for maintaining the corporate tax rate at 22 per cent level. This meeting, which was chaired by Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, was attended by top brass of industry chambers CII, FICCI and PHDCCI besides representatives of various industrial houses.

Eight points

Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) President Sanjiv Puri submitted eight points for consideration of FM Sitharaman including increase in capex by 25 per cent over the revised estimate of FY24.

He also urged the government to set up a high-powered expert group to review the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act, 

ASSOCHAM President Sanjay Nayar said, “We welcome the government’s emphasis on fiscal consolidation and believe it would proceed with a strategic focus on increasing capital expenditure.”

By prioritising investments in infrastructure, education, healthcare and other critical sectors, governments can stimulate economic growth while maintaining fiscal discipline, he added.

Sanjeev Agrawal, President, PHDCCI, said, “We recommend status quo on the corporate tax rate at 22 per cent for existing companies and 15 per cent for new manufacturing companies incorporated after October 1, 2019, to enhance the manufacturing share in GDP.”

Subhrakanta Panda, Past President, FICCI, emphasised the need to continue supporting the growth momentum by energising demand, laying thrust on infrastructure development, taking further measures to rein in food inflation, supporting MSMEs and prioritising innovation and research and development in the country.