Gulf NRI businessmen hail Union Budget

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Dubai, Feb 1 (PTI) Gulf-based Indian businessmen have hailed the Union Budget tabled by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, saying it will boost India's economy.

Yusuffali MA, prominent NRI businessman and Chairman of Lulu Group, said this “magical budget is sure to propel the Indian economy despite the global pandemic challenge.” Yusuffali said that the finance minister has given a huge thrust to healthcare along with infrastructure, education, research and development.

“Introduction of Aatmanirbhar health programme with an outlay of Rs. 64,180 cr. will go a long way in speeding up the economic recovery. Further spending on vaccinations is a great morale booster for both India and Indians,” he said.

“As an NRI businessman, I am very glad to note that there are some very specific steps being taken to tap the NRI investments,' he said. 'Announcement of “One Person Companies” or OPCs in India is going to be a game-changer especially for the start-up sectors and new-gen businesses,” he said.

Sitharaman on Monday said that the government will be incentivising the incorporation of One Person Companies (OPC), by allowing them to grow without any restrictions, to boost ease of doing business in the country.

Yusuffali also commended the increase in the tax threshold for NRIs from Rs. 5 cr to Rs. 10 cr and said rules to eliminate double taxation are very welcome initiatives.

“Kerala specific announcements such as the development of major fishing harbours including Kochi, huge allocation to further expand highway infrastructure and the Kochi Metro will surely boost state’s economy and make it more business-friendly,” Yusuffali said.

Sudesh K Aggarwal – Chairman ITEC m.e. & Giant Group of Companies, Chairman Emeritus – IBPC Sharjah, said the first post-Covid budget has assured that it cares for the health and well being of the people.

“There is a push on infra projects and economic activity, and I hope it shall lead to real-time employment generation,” Aggarwal said, adding that one-person company shall benefit NRI's.

Aggarwal, however, said that doubling the income of farmers is illusive.

“MSME ( Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) sector is not given enough push,” he said.

Kamal Vachani, the Regional Director, Electronics and Computer Software Export Promotion Council (ESC), and Group Director, Al Maya Group, said an increase in the allocation of MSME is a welcome step taken by the finance minister, which will boost the economy.

“Huge allocation for infrastructure will give a boost to upgrade roads, highways and other developments which will attract more investments in various sectors across the country. Announcing of new health infra scheme by Finance Minister is also welcome,” he said.

According to Vachani, tax exemption for affordable housing projects will have the potential to increase the rental yields.

“Setting up of faceless dispute resolution committee for small taxpayers of income up to Rs.50 lakh and disputable income or Rs.10 lakh will be very helpful,” Vachani said.

Chandrashekhar Bhatia, an office-bearer of the Maharashtra Business Forum in Dubai, said this budget should boost FDI inflow.

“The markets responding positively to the budget is a good sign,” he said.

“Lowering the cost of iron and steel is likely to trigger infrastructure development as well as affordable housing,” Bhatia said.

He also said that the government’s thrust in areas such as agriculture, roads and ports will channelise the ease of business and give more employment opportunities.

“Budget should always be about the growth of the nation and not subsidies to sick units,” Bhatia said. PTI Corr NSA