Who Said What on Union Budget 2022

Manish Sharma, CEO, Panasonic India, said, “Union Budget 2022 continues to pave the way for a sustainable economic growth in Amrit Kaal, backed by consistent structured approach. It underscores the Govt commitment towards Digital India and investment in Public Private Partnership through game changing initiatives like Gati Shakti programme, investment in the sunrise sectors and MSMEs, introducing policies for clean energy, among others. Infact, the seven engines defined under Gati Shakti initiative is bound to have a multiplier effect as it will help aid in reduction of logistics costs, enable supply-chain efficiencies, create employment generation all this, while using technology. It was encouraging to see the focus on clean energy. In line with Panasonic’s business strategy, we are looking forward to details on the Battery Swapping Policy and participate in India’s Electric Vehicle (EV) story. Also, the commitment on building a circular economy is the need of the hour as the world looks at sustainable solutions in a phased manner. In my experience with the current regime, policy conversations are not limited to Budget day but take place through the year. So we are hoping for discussions on how exports can be further incentivized and policy can be enhanced for design led local manufacturing. From an electronics sector standpoint, we expected reforms in the Union Budget FY 2022 – 23 that would accelerate growth channelized by consumer demand. For instance, rationalizing the GST from 28% to 18% on ACs and large screen size (>105cm) TVs will improve affordability and penetration as these are no longer considered luxury items. We will look forward to hearing from the GST Committee on this. From the individual’s perspective, no changes in tax structure can also be a relief as it defines stability in current times. Though more money in the hands of the tax-payers could have helped drive consumption over short term.”

Arundhati Bhattacharya, Chairperson & CEO Salesforce India, said, “Overall, this is a budget with a long-term vision supported by growth oriented policies driving job creation, digital inclusion, climate action and infrastructure development and therefore, is very timely for our country. As we continue to digitally transform, the focus on bolstering digital payments with a consumer-friendly lens, will continue to augment digital adoption across regional India. As a knowledge economy, I cannot emphasise enough on the importance of skilling to lead the digital disruption. Initiatives to drive skilling, reskilling and upskilling, digitally, will ensure we are ready for the digital future much ahead of the curve. Lastly, climate change is the most pressing global crisis that humanity is facing today impacting every individual, institution, government, community, and business. Investments in energy transition and climate action will take us on our path to sustainable development.”

Vishal Agrawal, MD, India and SAARC, Avaya, said, “We appreciate the government’s continuous focus on the technology sector with the Budget 2022-23. With the ongoing pandemic, the National Digital Health Ecosystem will act as boon to the healthcare workers as it will entail digital registries of health providers, health facilities, unique health identity and universal access to health facilities making their processes digitised and hence, seamless and simplified. At Avaya, we have been contributing to the industry in form of ‘remote healthcare’ for patient care. With social distancing becoming the new norm, frontline responders and healthcare institutions have swiftly adopted collaborative tools and cloud-based solutions to ensure continuity in providing quality healthcare. We look forward to assisting the government with this initiative. We also welcome the announcements on 5G rollout and PLI scheme as it will boost R&D, generate job opportunities, and enable enhanced connectivity across the country. In the last 2 years, Avaya has helped over 2 million people work remotely without disruptions and ensure business continuity and resilience for various organizations across verticals. Therefore, we appreciate the government moving towards a direction which will enhance hybrid work which indeed is the future of workplace. The Government has also allocated INR 50,000 crore equity infusion in MSMEs which will further strengthen their digital transformation journey. With Avaya being one of the leading global companies in the communications space, we look forward to helping MSMEs create unique customer experiences and scale up with the help of our robust and collaborative solutions. We are also thrilled about government’s announcement around data centers and digital infrastructure boost, and look forward to collectively contribute to the goal of a 5 trillion economy.”

Avneet Singh Marwah, CEO, Super Plastronics Pvt Ltd, Kodak brand licensee, said, “While I’m very happy about the big announcements on 5G technology, which I’m sure will go a long way to improve Internet connectivity which will, in turn, help the Smart TV industry grow, I was expecting more for the consumer electronics industry. We were expecting GST reduction on televisions from 28% to 18% on 81cm and above or PLI schemes. We also welcome the move to provide 80 lakhs affordable homes this year, which will definitely expand the consumer electronics market, but to give the current market sentiments a fillip and improve consumer confidence, more needs to be done for healthcare, education, manufacturing.”

Rajesh Goenka, Director, Sales & Marketing, RP tech India, said, “This is a very progressive budget focused on giving a boost to the infrastructural development and attracting global investments in form of FDIs. The government has been consistent in giving emphasis on the overall growth and development of industries rather offering sector-specific incentives. The budget will create employment opportunities across the industry verticals and accelerate the GDP growth. We hail the government for its strategic decisions and futuristic approach for the self-reliant India.”

Gurjodhpal Singh, CEO, Tide (IN), said, “The financial support for the digital payments ecosystem is a welcome move and further reaffirms the Government of India’s digital banking push. This push on digitisation will make way for more inclusion in the ecosystem. The focus on ‘Ease of doing business’ is a great step, as it will further promote entrepreneurship in the economy. Fintechs will continue to play the role that we have been playing for the past couple of years now, and these policies will further strengthen our role in the ecosystem. Moreover, the decision to interlink MSME portals and added corpus is the much-needed support at this hour.”

Nitin Bansal, MD, India & Head-Networks – Southeast Asia, Oceania, and India at Ericsson, said, “We are pleased that the budget for 2022 seeks to leverage technology for enabling the next phase of sustainable socio-economic development of the nation with the use of drones for land surveys and crop assessments, the introduction of digital currency, infrastructure status to data centers, e-content delivery, and e-passports. Apart from this, the announcement of the DESL stack portal to upskill Indian youth as per industry needs will help to fill the talent and skill gap. From a telecom sector perspective, FM’s announcement around the 5G spectrum auction, 100 percent fiberisation with PPP model will provide the required impetus to build upon ubiquitous and reliable internet connectivity. Thereby, bridging the digital divide for a conducive and inclusive development of the nation in keeping with the ‘Digital India’ initiative. Further, design-led initiatives for 5G under the PLI scheme and 5% of USOF for R&D purposes will strengthen the ‘Make in India’ initiative, and contribute to making India a global manufacturing hub.”

CP Gurnani, MD & CEO, Tech Mahindra, said, “The budget truly echoes India’s vision towards inclusive development and building a truly ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ by providing a blueprint for the economy over ‘Amrit Kal’ from India at 75 to India at 100. FM’s key announcements on blockchain and setting up e-passports with futuristic technologies are a step in the right direction to help India emerge as a global technology leader. The focus on innovation and R&D (Research and Development) with an emphasis on strengthening talent capacity through STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) universities and skilling courses in IIT’s will enable India to become a global hub for skilled talent. Overall, Budget 2022 promises to provide the much-needed impetus to sustain India’s economic and digital growth.”

Rajiv Bhalla, MD, Barco India, said, “The emphasis on growth, digitization and being future ready outlines the government’s commitment to cohesive development and ‘Make in India’. Focus on Gati Shakti masterplan, youth, women, job creation, technology and infrastructure development among others will drive India’s Amrit Kal, journey from 75 to 100 years as a democracy. India has the potential to be a world-class infrastructure centre, and the Budget has provided enough impetus to propel the same. In addition, we expect the digital ecosystem for skilling will boost human capital and empower industries significantly.”

Prabhakar Iyer, Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer, Ingram Micro India, said, ” FM has presented a splendid Growth oriented budget. The budget has the thrust on infrastructure development, digitization, skilling, and ease of doing business. It is a forward-looking budget and will have an impact in the years to come. Infra spending will generate millions of jobs and propel the growth in the economy. The government has embraced technology and digitization in all sectors of the economy viz. defense, agriculture, health, education. It is very interesting to note the way Government is adapting the digitization – by increasing faceless engagement with government and also between the private sector through government platforms, creation of unified logistics platform, Delivery of digital and Hi-tech services to farmers, use of Kisan drones to aid farmers, establishing Digital university, e labs, e skilling are a very modern and contemporary governance process. The tax was always applicable to gains on virtual assets. The current budget gives more clarity on the same. It is a welcoming measure. The introduction of digital currency is one of the great steps in the right direction. It shows that we as a country are ready to embrace and adapt to the virtual currency dynamics and grow the economy in a modern way. Digital money, Digital banking, and digital platform in dealing with the government are the key drivers of the government. Overall, a very consistent and simple budget with 100% directional alignment to last year’s budget focuses on building trust. This shows the long-term focus of the government versus too many changes whilst keeping the option of announcing reforms throughout the year.”

A Gururaj, MD, Optiemus Electronics Ltd , said, “ The industry has been completely galvanized under the pioneering initiative of PLI scheme, with Hon’ble FM today stating that it has potential to create 60 Lakh new jobs and additional production of 30 lakh crores. This is also a clarion call to the industry to work much harder in the years to come to make it a reality. On a macro level, the scheme around design-led manufacturing as part of the PLI scheme would fasten the development of the ecosystem, and also changes in customs duty will drive greater domestic value addition in Electronics manufacturing in the country, which has grown rapidly in the last few years.”

Agendra Kumar, Managing Director, Esri India, said, “Union Budget 2022 has announced the PM Gati Shakti program as one of the priority areas of the government. Seven engines of the PM Gati Shakti initiative are roads, railways, airports, ports, mass transport, waterways and logistics infra. As the Indian economy moves towards strengthening these initiatives, geospatial technology will gain more prominence in the process. As shared by the Hon’ble Finance Minister, the Gati Shakti program would involve huge investments in construction of about 25,000 Kms of highways, multimodal transport, and modernization of land records. These are welcome steps, and GIS and other geospatial technologies will facilitate efficient implementation of these schemes. With the launch of Jal Jeevan Mission (Urban), the government is aiming at universal water supply in all 4,378 Urban Local Bodies with 2.86 crores household tap connections, as well as liquid waste management in 500 AMRUT cities. GIS based water distribution network planning, execution and operations will go a long way in bringing these plans to fruition more quickly and efficiently.”

Puneet Gupta, Managing Director & Vice President, NetApp India, said, “I am excited to see the government’s focus on technology sector, as a whole. The incentives towards creating digital infrastructure, education, and skilling, spell out the intent on developing the country’s human capital. The emphasis of digitised skilling will help make our country’s youth future-ready. Additionally, the announcement on RBI introducing digital currency and the government providing infrastructure status to data centers, will help create a framework for emerging technologies making the digital India Inc better and stronger.”

Sunil Sharma, managing director – sales, Sophos India & SAARC, said, “The Union Budget 2022 presented by the Government of India is built on the foundation of introducing new technologies across sectors. From education to finance, logistics, and healthcare, the bedrock of change will be driven by tech. The Government has further proposed the introduction of the digital rupee. While this will definitely enhance efficiency and promote growth, increased digital penetration also brings with it additional cyber risks that one should be vary of. As a step towards mitigating cyberattacks, the Government plans to set up broadband in villages as well as the Digital DESH e-portal. This will help equip youth with the right skills, including cybersecurity skill sets, needed to operate safely in today’s tech-driven world.”

Dhruvil Sanghvi, Founder & Chief Executive Officer, LogiNext, said, “We welcome the move by the Government of India to boost logistics as a means towards ensuring economic growth. The proposal to set up a Unified Logistics Interface Platform is a welcome move. Leveraging technology to complement the development of infrastructure will help bring in better efficiency. Furthermore, with real-time tracking, and inventory management as a part of the platform, this will go a long way in bringing India at par with global supply chain networks. LogiNext has always been an advocate for digitisation of supply chains, and it is reassuring to see the Government work towards this. The decision taken to extend the tax incentives provided to startups till March 31, 2023 is a reflection of the Government’s commitment towards ease of doing business in India.”

Kunal Nagarkatti, CEO, Clover Infotech, said, “The Government’s focus on creating a strong digital ecosystem to enhance banking and financial inclusion is a step in the right direction. Bringing all post office banks under the core banking ambit will enable seamlessness in digital payments and online transfer of funds and accelerate financial inclusion. The setting up of the Digital DESH e-portal for skilling initiatives is the need of the hour as it will bridge the gap between the supply and demand for digitally skilled and technically strong resources.”

Niraj Hutheesing, Founder and Managing Director, Cygnet Infotech, said, “The advancement in enhanced transparency of payments is a huge stride forward for India in terms of fintech innovation. The proposed end-to-end online e-Bill system will enable increased productivity for industries that go completely paperless. This will prove to be extremely fruitful for digitization. Furthermore, the acknowledgement that India’s GST collection stands at Rs.1.4 lakh crore for the month of January 2022, exemplifies the growing need for digital taxation solutions that promise to take the Indian economy to the next level.”

Bhavin Turakhia, Co-founder and CEO, Zeta and Founder and CEO, Nova (Flock and Titan), said, “It is encouraging to see the government’s support for the startup sector in the Union Budget for 2022 through tax incentives and easing of regulatory frictions in venture capital investments. Additionally, the impetus towards the rollout of 5G and broadband services in 2022 will catalyze an entrepreneurial culture and expand India’s presence on the global map of technology innovation.”

Ankit Saraiya, Director, Techno Electric and Engineering Limited, said, “The world has seen decades of accelerated digital transformation and adoption of technology, owing to the pandemic. The budget significantly encapsulates the role of tech and includes disruptive, innovative and futuristic growth potential of an aspirational India. The enhanced status of the Data Center and Energy projects to infrastructure status marks a huge step for the industry from a ‘Make in India’ perspective and reassuring several domestic Data Center developers. Additionally, the development and auctioning of the 5G spectrum, incentivizing the AI, EV and digital transformation space will contribute significantly to the Digital India mission. The government’s stance on the Block chain technologies and the implementation of digital rupee using block chain and other technologies will give a big boost to the tech eco-system of India. We perceive this move to be a big positive push for the government’s “Digital India” programme.”

Lalit Mehta, Co-founder & CEO, Decimal Technologies, said, “The focus on fintech and technology enabled development right at the outset of the budget speech set an encouraging tone for the industry and the overarching vision of an all-inclusive digital economy. Starting with the paperless budget, the common thread throughout the Finance Minister’s speech was the focus on promoting digital and technological innovations across sectors, which will spell accelerated growth for technology led development, energy transition and climate action, while ensuring an inclusive welfare society. It is heartening to see a sustained push towards making the benefits of digital banking reach every corner of our country with an initiative that marks the 75th year of independence by establishing 75 digital banking units across 75 districts. Core banking across hundred percent of the 1.5 lakh post offices by 2022, financial support for digital payments ecosystem, and a 6,000 crore rupees programme to rate MSMEs to be rolled out over 5 years, are some much needed steps in this direction.”

Alok Dubey, Chief Finance officer, Acer India, said, “The Union Budget announced today showcased the government’s initiative towards Digital Transformation. From announcing a Digital University, for online learning to high-quality e-content across languages will enable the youth to skill, upskill and reskill themselves. These programs under digital learning and the connectivity expansion will further strengthen the availability and accessibility of internet in rural areas. With Govt infrastructure spending push, we are likely to see more employment and growth opportunities and enhanced private sector investment in manufacturing. We are confident that the exemption of duty on parts of select electronic items will further boost the domestic manufacturing of electronics goods under the PLI scheme. Overall, the Union Budget 2022-23 is a promising budget and a step forward towards ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’.”

Vikram Kumar, Co-founder, MyTat( Skilling Startup), said, “Budget 2022 gave a major and much needed thrust to digital skilling with initiatives like Digital DESH. Emphasis on a digital ecosystem for skilling and livelihood points to the much-needed market oriented digital skills development”.

Prashant Solomon, MD, Chintels India & Hon. Treasurer, CREDAI NCR, said, “The governments focus on increased urbanisation, planning and governance along with comprehensive sector development is a step in the right direction. Affordable housing also gets a major boost with housing projects being allotted Rs 48,000 Cr for FY23 and 80 lakh homes under PMAY. The budget’s impetus on creating a sustainable urban development policy is also commendable. The Long-Term Capital Gain capping at 15% across assets classes is a welcome move for property buyers.”

Arun Pandey, Co-founder, Beyondlife.club, said, “ It has been the industry’s request for some time to bring digital assets and currency in the regulatory framework and it is heartening to note that the Hon’ble FM and Hon’ble PM have recognised the sector. Taxation and TDS on Digital Assets have come as a sudden move for the industry. It might hit user sentiments in the short term; however, we shall see how the ecosystem evolves in the country and are committed to work as per the rule of the land.”

Suraj Malik, Partner, BDO India (M&A), said, “Budget has laid out foundation for the pillars of growth without too much tinkering in the tax laws. FM has focused on digital and tech enabled macro growth with micro participation backed by incentives and targeted policy reforms to support MSME, startups, innovation and domestic manufacturing. Reduction in surcharge rates and stability in tax policy will boost investor sentiment.”

Dr Mona Lisa Bal, Chairperson, KiiT International School, said, “The Union Budget 2022 announced today was a hit and miss for the education sector. While it has finally addressed and recognized the learning loss the pandemic has created, the need to develop the digital infrastructure of the country was not adequately focused in the budget. The economically disadvantaged students especially in rural areas have lost essential years of education and introduction of supplementary teachers was highly necessary. Supplementary education can help bridge the gap to a large extent. Increase of ‘One Class One TV Channel’ from 12 to 200 TV Channels to provide supplementary education in regional languages for class 1-12 is a welcome move but it will not be enough. It is important that we adapt our education system, pedagogies, and assessments according to the changing times. Upskilling is the need of the hour. Thus, the launch of Digital DESH e-portal for skilling, upskilling and reskilling will be key to adapting to the shifting dynamics of our present. Setting up of virtual labs and skilling e-labs will be valuable in developing critical thinking amongst students. Access to high quality e-content can help enhance the quality of education received by students. Making this accessible in regional languages additionally is a positive step towards a wholesome education. Development of a digital university to provide access to students for world-class quality education with ISTE Standards will be beneficial in the long run by making education available for a wider audience through the power of the internet. However, the much-needed increase in budget allotment for the education sector was missed. Further constructive measures towards digitization and resuming physical classes are needed.”

Piyush Gupta, CEO, Polytrade, said, “The announcement to introduce Central bank digital currency (CBDC) by Nirmala Sitharaman, the hon’ble finance minister in Budget 2022 is an encouraging development. The remark is a testimony that the government is supportive of utilizing digital currency for larger masses. The adoption of CBDC will improve and make it easier for people to use Polytrade with the supporting infra provided by the govt. The development will make digital currencies more accessible to the people just as UPI made digital cash easier to use. We expect that in near future the government will continue to support and encourage digital currencies that will propel the GDP to $ 5 trillion as envisaged by our PM Narendra Modi.”

Saurabh Soni, Co-founder, Digisparsh said “I welcome the Government’s decision to set up 75 banking units in 75 districts. This is a strong move to penetrate digital financial services in our rural market which has 40 cr+ Jan Dhan customers. This will not just help to bring the unbanked population under the financial ecosystem but also enable them to receive timely financial aid to fulfil their education, business and health needs. Especially post pandemic when out of pocket expenses to meet medical emergencies have shot up drastically, forcing people to resort to unorganised debt markets consisting of loan sharks. So while more details are awaited, I hope this also paves way for PPP (Private Public Partnerships) to emerge and provide specialized, low cost, targeted financial services, because rural banking needs are starkly different from urban needs. At Digisparsh, we are at the conjunction of health, technology and finance. We work with consumers to provide 0% interest loans to meet their healthcare needs and help hospitals across the country to meet their working capital requirements. We are keen to work with banking institutions, government and healthcare ecosystem to ensure no one is deprived of financial support when their loved ones are ailing.”

Swapnik Jakkampudi, Co-Founder, Skye Air Mobility, said, “The FM announced a very progressive budget keeping a horizon and outlook of 3-4 years. The budget has covered multiple avenues for drone industry to rise, the focus on promoting Agricultural Drones and NABARD fund to support startups will result in ensuring that the Drone Industry reach a new milestone. The development of 100 new cargo terminals in the next 3 years will also add to the growth of Drones enabled to use for cargo deliveries within the terminals and terminals to delivery locations. The budget has been a very guiding force towards our Hon’ble PM’s vision for “Making India a Global Drone Hub by 2030.”

Mughilan Thiru Ramasamy, CEO & Co-founder Skylark Drones, said, “The union budget and the initiatives announced by the honourable Finance Minister continue to provide impetus to the growth of the drone industry in India. The introduction of drone shakti is a welcome move and will ensure business momentum and drive faster adoption of UAVs in the country. It is encouraging to see the government promoting Digital India and digitisation of various sectors through the integration of UAVs through varied applications and drones as a service. India with its vast natural resources spanning from agriculture, minerals, and great infrastructure is finally getting the much-required momentum to become digital. The announcement to promote the use of ‘Kisan drones’ in the agricultural sector as part of the Budget for 2022-23 will enable the drone industry to collaborate with our farmers to improve operational efficiency and maximize profitability. This is a welcoming move and will make India’s agricultural sector future ready. Today, both enterprises and the government are realising the economic and social opportunities that India’s widespread and dispersed geospatial assets can provide to the nation. Becoming Digital First and creating a digital repository of India, will enable faster growth of our economy and the much-needed transparency thereby improved governance. UAVs offer an ideal compromise between scalability, economic feasibility, immunity to error, and productivity. The faster adoption of UAVs is therefore critical to realise the potential of these geospatial assets.”

Harish Prasad, Head Of Banking, India, FIS, said, “The formal announcement of the Honble. Finance Minister on launch of India’s CBDC, the Digital Rupee, during 2022-23 is a much awaited and positive move. This will trigger a wave of preparatory activity amongst retail payments providers and apps to offer payment mechanisms using the Digital Rupee, along the lines as been seen in China with major Digital payments players and apps offering Digital Yuan payments via their apps. There will likely be a similar model that will be seen in India to support adoption and use of the Digital Rupee, which is paramount for its success. Another effect of this in the slightly longer term could be that the dependence on UPI for small value payments could potentially reduce with the Digital Rupee gaining traction in time. Given the level of growth being seen on UPI and the associated stress on technology infrastructures of issuers and banks, this may be a good thing after all. What will be keenly awaited though is clarity on digital currency owner identification and any associated reporting requirements for payments apps, and whether the anonymity that physical currency enables is an attribute that will be supported in the Digital Rupee.”

Paavan Nanda, Co-founder, WinZO, said, “We welcome the Finance Minister’s announcement during Budget 2022 to set up an Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming, and Comics (AVGC) task force with the objective of building domestic capacity to serve our markets and global demand. Gaming is a soon-to-be trillion-dollar industry, and it is heartening to see that the Government of India has acknowledged the exponential potential that this sector holds. As a giant step towards contributing to the same, WinZO launched the country’s first-ever national-level scholarship program called B.O.S.S (Battle of Super Scholars) and unveiled a $26M Game Developer’s fund with an aim to provide a platform to the best minds to disrupt this emerging global gaming industry. WinZO, as a leading game tech company, will be willing to work with public stakeholders to attract the best talent to this growing industry.”

Sandeep Lodha, Co-founder at Netweb Technologies, said, “It is heartening to see the government focus on the rural areas. This can accelerate government’s earlier declared digital banks and overall enhance and enrich the rural economy. Digital banking and fintech spending by the government is going to enhance the financing and overall support the entrepreneurial spirit as well as benefiting the IT sector to provide the required infrastructure.

Emphasis on 5G:

Government’s announcement of 5G spectrum auction by 22- 23 was on the expected line. It is good to see the announcement of PLI scheme for design led manufacturing, this will help in getting ready with Make in India products and solutions. We welcome the government commitment to R&D and formalizing the same by allocating 5% of Universal service obligation to this but will need to see when this can be effective on ground. R & D has a cycle and sooner we get in we can start rolling the products when the actual implementation starts.”

Avinash Shekhar, CEO, ZebPay, said, “Tax has always been applicable to gains on virtual digital currencies, but the ecosystem did not have clarity on it. The move to tax virtual digital assets gives the entire ecosystem including investors and exchanges transparency on the road ahead. 30% tax on income from virtual digital assets, while high, is a positive step as it legitimizes crypto and hints at an optimistic sentiment towards further acceptance of crypto and NFTs across stakeholders in the country. The government has come a long way in its stance towards crypto from last Feb to today and we are confident that this will herald a new era of growth and innovation for India in a Web 3.0 world. Additionally, the announcement on the launch of a Digital Rupee using blockchain issued by the RBI will familiarise Indians with the benefits and efficiency of virtual currency, building an appetite for the crypto, blockchain and the multitudes of innovations and employment opportunities that these technologies are capable of fostering. The Budget focused heavily on integrating technology across sectors, and the gradual acceptance of a digital currency, blockchain and virtual digital assets has the potential to make India a leader in this new paradigm of blockchain-enabled revolution.”

Amit Nigam, COO & Executive Director at BANKIT said, “FinTech industry is an ever-growing sector of the society. As per one of the ideologies of budget 2022 “Aatma Nirbhar Bharat Ka Budget”, the FinTech industry also strives to make everyone self-reliant. According to the budget 2022-2023, India’s growth is expected to grow by 9.27% including high-yielding opportunities for start-ups. As digital payments have grown at rapid pace, the benefits of digital banking should reach every nook and corner. So, 75 digital banking units will be set up in 75 districts by scheduled commercial banks that will be like icing on the cake. Focus on the usage of Digital Payment Apps will also be enhanced from our end. All the 1.5 lakh post offices in India will be connected to the core banking system that will enable people to access their accounts online and transfer money within post office accounts and to other banks also. As tax incentives for start-ups to be incorporated until March 31, 2023, Union Budget sounds favorable for FinTech start-ups. Next phase of “Ease of Doing Business, Ease of Living” is also ready to be launched. Hence, we are looking forward to making the best use of new technological and advantageous opportunities designated by the Union Budget 2022-2023.”

Sidharth Agarwal, Director, Spectrum Talent Management says, “As per today’s budget announcement by the FM, there will be creation of 60 Lac new jobs. Using a capital investment approach to do so and not making much alterations would work considering how well the corporate sector is doing. Taking in account the last 2 years of pandemic which has been difficult for all, there wasn’t much for the salaried class/middle class. However, if I must say so, the goal is to improve things through infrastructure investment and by not putting money directly in the hands of the consumers. Introducing Desh Stack e-portal should be a help in creating and stimulating the environment for skill development. In the last year’s budget NAPS was the fourth pillar and now, announcing Desh Stack is a step in the right direction.”

Midhula Devabhaktuni, Co-founder and CMO, Mivi, said, “The government has today announced duty exemption on electronics manufacturing including wearables and hearables. This is a very commendable move and will help Indian companies like Mivi that are manufacturing in India. We will be able to not only create more number of jobs but also offer a more price competitive product to our customers. It will also encourage more Indian brands to look to produce locally and reduce their dependence on imports.”

Ashish Nayyar, Co-Head of India, OakNorth, said, “Budget 2022 sets an ambitious blueprint for steering us towards India@100. We particularly welcome the strong push to develop the country’s infrastructure through the PM Gati Shakti National Master Plan which will be a game changer not just in spurring economic activity but also for human capital development and employment generation in some of the most critical sectors of the economy.We believe the Budget provides for continued policy thrust on enhancing the digital payment ecosystem is a clear positive for the FinTech sector. Specifically, the introduction of the Digital Rupee based on blockchain by the RBI will be an interesting catalyst in powering Digital India 2.0. The extension and enhanced allocation towards the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) till March 2023 will provide much needed relief to the MSME sector which are a core engine for employment generation and economic growth. Budget 2022 also proposes to extend the existing tax benefits for startups by 1 more year – a promising and welcome move that will support the startup ecosystem in the country. We also welcome the government’s funding support to sunrise sectors such as climate action, deep tech, digital economy and agri tech. We also welcome the strong focus on skill development by aligning the National Skill Qualification Framework with dynamic industry needs and promoting skilling programmes in partnership with the industry to promote upskilling and employability. This is an important but often overlooked area, which is critical in ensuring the upward economic mobility of the masses.”

Dilip Modi, Founder, Spice Money, said, “It is extremely heartening to see the digital economy and fintech technology-enabled development being a key focus area for Budget 2022-23. The government’s proposal of setting up 75 Digital Banking units in 75 districts of the country and providing online fund transfer between post office accounts and bank accounts will help in adding further tailwinds to expand necessary banking services to the last mile and enable us to take a step further towards our goal of financial inclusion through rural empowerment. The government’s continuous focus on the digital payments ecosystem has paved the way for digital adoption amongst the unbanked and underbanked population of the country especially post the outbreak of the pandemic. We are hoping to see a much higher traction this year that will address the current challenges faced by the citizens and create a #AtmaNirbharBharat. Additionally, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s announcement on the allotment of funds through NABARD to finance start-ups for agriculture & rural enterprises along with the plans to launch delivery of hi-tech services for farmers including the use of Kisan Drones is a great move towards the development of the agri sector as well as for supporting nanopreneurs. We are hopeful that the government’s strong support and initiatives including the introduction of digital rupee by RBI will help in accelerating the growth for the fintech sector and will create multiple avenues for the underserved parts of the country.”

Vishwadeep Bajaj, CEO, ValueFirst, said, “Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced earlier about initiating the 5G spectrum in India next year. This development is incredible, especially for the banking sector. The spectrum will provide faster and simpler payment options, which will make mobile and digital payments even more appealing to the masses and merchants alike, further boosting usage. This is key to economic growth. Another major advantage of 5G will be its ability for banks to improve proactive fraud prevention and take informed decisions in real-time. Processing data, verifying the nature of transactions, confirming transaction amounts and funds availability, consulting multiple data instances in real-time, coupled with customer geolocation and merchant ID, will reduce fraud detection errors and false positives, thereby protecting consumers and the bank’s bottom line.”

Amit Gupta, MD, SAG Infotech, said, “In this budget a lot of emphasis is on creating a digital India as every project announced is all about making use of technology. From e-passports to digital currency, India is well on its way to become a nation driven by the most advanced technologies. With the provision for blockchain technologies, we can witness many new sectors coming up and start-ups getting a new direction. The focus on domestic manufacturing will also have a direct impact on the tech industry reducing costs and facilitating smooth running of business. As IT industry will be a major game changer in this financial year, we were expecting direct relaxation on the import duty of technology from this budget. First of all, we must take into consideration cryptocurrencies being added by the government into taxable assets which indirectly gives crypto a legible stand in the market. The introduction of a digital rupee with the blockchain is an excellent move also. The 30% tax on digital asset transfer is a bargain however no dedction is projected on the computing while loss cannot be set off on other income. Also, the TDS introduction of 1 per cent is to be seen on transfers. All in all, a great step to make digital currency a well-established form of payment and to strengthen the technology based on it. With the expansion and the extension of ECLGS, it will definitely empower our hospitality sector especially in overcoming “easily-convertible-to-cash assets”. Cash-inflow was extremely choked to death with no travel at all forcing small Travel Agents and Tour Operators to eventually shut down. Thank you to our FM for being a rescuer by announcing this monetary extension support.”

Rajeev Sharma, Chief Strategy Officer, Mitsubishi Electric India Pvt. Ltd., said, “This is a growth-oriented Budget, I am sure that stepping up the capital expenditure sharply by 35.4% will have an incremental effect on the overall growth of the economy. It is good that the policy makers understand that nearly half of our population is likely to be living in urban areas by 2047, when India is at 100. The announcement for urban capacity building like mass transit, planning help, etc. would act as a good principle for development of the country. The budget has demonstrated a good balance between today’s needs and the future’s demand.”

Kanika Agarrwal, Co-founder of Upside AI, said, “This budget was great because it spoke the language of new India and looks to the future. Plenty of buzzwords – Drones, blockchain, crypto, green energy, startups. But it was more than just lip service as the FM’s speech relays the governments willingness to work with emerging sectors. Moves like addressing crypto uncertainty, digital rupee, investment in green energy, committee for startups, limiting surcharge on LTCG are all positive not just for the policies themselves but also for the signal the government is giving us. Focus on infrastructure, the LIC IPO, updating the IBC are continuing themes from last year. We hope to see more execution on these this year. Overall, budget continued to signal intent and direction for the government which was positive. Negative was the lack of tax cuts or relief for consumers and businesses who have suffered greatly in the last two years.”

Dr. Navneet Gupta, Founder & CEO at YPay, said, “India’s fintech system was a silver lining in the difficult times of lockdown and the pandemic. The nation has been bullish with digital payments, and the current budget has further fueled the same by announcing 75 digital banking units in 75 districts. Inclusion of 1.5 lakh post offices under banking system with digital infrastructure enablement will promote financial inclusion, and accelerate shifting micro economy in the mainstream banking system. Gradually, all the efforts will strengthen credit access, and payments in the MSME system will certainly reflect in the nation’s economic growth at large.”

Nikhil Rathi, Founder, and CEO, Web Werks, said, “There is excellent scope for the IT sector, building on the past, to provide a stronger foundation for the future. The budget is sure to strengthen the foundation by infra status to data centers with a focus on gaming and tech, in addition to digital currency. This budget further accelerates the Digital India push. Infra Status to data centers will provide further impetus to a fast-growing industry giving access to benefits like cheaper finance. Growing energy costs globally can be mitigated with — Focus on Green Clean energy and energy storage as infrastructure will make India a location that can build the backend to the data center industry even better. This helps set the stage to make India a data center Hub. Gaming, tech, and digital rupee will create more transactions, thus more data which in the country will further increase the need for data centers. It will also facilitate an increase in the timeline for Startups, as a foundation will further build for startups with the extension of benefits for another year, and with infrastructure getting a boost they can build on a sound foundation in India.”

Pradeep Bakshi, MD & CEO, Voltas Limited, said, “Drawing inspiration from Atmanirbhar movement, Budget 2022 continues to provide impetus for growth in the domestic market. The measures introduced by the Finance Minister in Budget 2022 will not only support domestic capacity creation but also ease the raw material supply constraints. The approval of PLI scheme for white goods was a major milestone for consumer durables sector in India and we are pleased to see that the Government has unleashed plans for PLIs and Phased Manufacturing for other sectors, that are bound to grow rapidly in the coming years. At Voltas, we have been contributing towards nation building since our inception and we look forward to being a part of India’s growth story as it strives for development.”

S Durgaprasad, Co-Founder, Director and Group CEO, Bahwan CyberTek Group, said, “It is clear that technology will be a force multiplier in the coming months. And this year’s budget reiterates the government’s strong reliance on Digital for economic growth. The announcement of a Digital University, a National Digital Health Ecosystem, 75 Digital Banking Units, e-passports, and the aspiration to ensure all villages have the same access to digital resources as urban areas indicate a blueprint for IT-driven comprehensive development. The tax exemption for start-ups and the introduction of digital rupee using blockchain technology provide a stimulus for innovation and highlights the country’s appetite for emerging technologies. I’m confident that this budget will pave the way for a digitally transformed India equipped with all the resources for sustainable development at scale.”

Pulkit Sharma, Co Founder and Ceo, Khabri, said, “We highly support our government’s decision of the Production Linked Incentive Scheme that will create 60 lakh new jobs in the next 5 years. The idea of Digital university will help India set a top-notch world-class education. We believe that knowledge and awareness will support India becoming Atmanirbhar and through the expansion of the One class, one TV channel’ program of PM eVIDYA this cause will be highly achievable. Regional languages will be empowered through this program, which enables all states to provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1 to 12. These digital initiatives will provide for a more conducive environment for the adoption of tech-based learning and which will directly route to empowering youth from real Bharat.”

Chetan Kumar, Co-Founder, Ekank Technologies, said, “Firstly, would like to appreciate our government extending the tax initiatives for startups up to March 2023. Through tax initiatives and new reforms in the direct tax, the startup ecosystem will enhance effectively within no time. The idea of launching a digital university will help understand people the culture of India through world-class education. The Introduction of Digital currency by the central bank will definitely lead away to cheaper currency management. The highlight of the budget for us is the expansion of the One class, one TV channel’ program of PM eVIDYA which will help promote the regional languages in the country as through the program, all states will provide supplementary education in regional languages for classes 1 to 12. The government has also focussed on establishing a positive mental health environment and with Ekank Technologies, we completely support this initiative through our feature of ‘light read’, which gives the users a chance to enjoy stress-free reading.”

Vikas Jain, Co Founder and Ceo, World of Play, said, “We support the government’s focus on technology, it will help many tech based companies like WORLD OF PLAY to come up with exciting product experience for the Indian consumers. We welcome the focus of government on the wearables and acoustic component ecosystem and domestic manufacturing and believe on a long term, this focus will make India as a formidable design and manufacturing powerhouse. Additionally the boost in ease of doing business and special impetus on creating 60 lakh new jobs will give a desired push to the goal of becoming Atma Nirbhar Bharat. As a brand, we promote and follow Make in India and we believe long-term policies like this will give us the desired support for the local design and also manufacturing in India.”

Vijay Kumar Mikkilineni, Head of Marketing, TCL India, said, “We welcome the Finance Minister’s increased focus on the consumer electronics industry and formation technology, which will definitely benefit all worldwide companies, including ours. The 2022 Union Budget allocated 1.97 lakh crore ($26 billion) for PLI projects, notably electronic components, which are among the 13 vital sectors that would undoubtedly help our economy expand. Furthermore, reduced customs taxes will encourage electronics manufacture, which will benefit the electronics industry.”

Sai Srinivas, Co-Founder and CEO, Mobile Premier League (MPL), said, “It is very encouraging to see that the Union Budget has taken into consideration some of the long-pending suggestions for the Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming, and Comics (AVGC) sector, while noting the strong potential this industry holds for employment-generation as well as taking ‘Made in India’ game titles global. We welcome the Hon’ble Finance Minister’s announcement to set up an AVGC Promotion Task Force to provide a much-needed boost to the sector. This announcement highlights the need to build capacity to serve both domestic and global markets, and is a strong indicator of the impetus that the government is willing to provide for its growth. It is also heartening to see the government’s commitment to work with the industry, allowing for a balanced approach that accommodates the needs of all stakeholders and strengthens the ecosystem holistically. A progressive tax regime, predictable regulatory framework and supportive funding policies will allow the industry to compete on the world stage and fulfil the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision for the Indian digital gaming sector to be a global powerhouse. Moreover, it will also help develop a workforce of young and employable AVGC professionals to usher in the next tech revolution from within India. The Budget rightly mentions that promoting the digital economy and sunrise sectors will be a priority in the next 25 years (75 to 100 years of India’s Independence)—the Amrit Kaal of India. With a renewed focus on the AVGC sector, blended financing for deep tech and IT, hardware and electronics manufacturing combined with deployment of 5G and affordable internet in underserved areas, it is clear that the government is committed to take the Indian startup ecosystem to the next level. We are hopeful that with the positive support of the government, the coming years will see online gaming, VFX and esports startups leading the charge in the global economy. By developing deep tech intellectual property and exporting services, they can help cement India’s position as a world leader in the sector.”

Ajit Kumar, Chief Strategy Officer, KFintech, said, “The recent announcement around NPS on the Union Budget 2022 brings parity between central and state government employees NPS contribution. Now even state govt employees can enjoy higher retirement benefits as State Govt will contribute 14% instead of 10% to NPS. Further, we wish the same was extended to non-govt employees too.”

Nadira Hamid, CEO, Indo-Canadian Business Chamber, said, “The intent of the Government is clear. Infrastructure and the digital economy is where growth and jobs will come from. Canada’s largest pension funds and investment firms have in recent invested billions of dollars into investments within infrastructure, real estate and even start-ups in India. This budget opens up a plethora of opportunities for Canada and will propel the Indo-Canadian relationship to greater heights to achieve enhanced economic development. Foreign Universities, especially from Canada can for the first time operate in the country and concepts like Animation, Visual Effects, Gaming and Comic (AVGS) have found recognition. These are definitely bold and visionary statements. We welcome the budget which will see pronounced interaction between India and Canada.”

Yeshwanth Raj Parasmal, Co-founder, 21K School, said, “The Finance Minister has unveiled a Budget that aims to bridge the economic gap between India and Bharat. The proposed policies are an inspiring start in what will hopefully provide stimuli for continued growth, leading us closer towards our goal of achieving sustained acceleration! I welcome the focus on digital aspects of education and creating greater access for students with structured, high-quality content. The announcement of Digital University is most welcome and in line with the trend of online schools across the country. But, it misses the opportunity to leapfrog with more significant innovation and investment for improved access, equity and affordability. The structural flaws of the education sector and problems on the ground could have been addressed. Exciting times are ahead for Digital Education.”

Anand Kumar Bajaj, Founder, MD & CEO, PayNearby, said, “The Ministry of Finance has presented a well-rounded, futuristic and optimistic Union Budget 2022 to propel the digital economy and boost the MSME sector. Given that ‘inclusive development’ and ‘financing of investments’ were two of the seven pillars of the Budget, it laid the foundation for faster financial inclusion and expansion of the credit ecosystem. In a bid to make MSMEs more resilient and competitive, the extension of the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) till March 2023 is a critical step. This measure will ensure the continued handholding of MSMEs, which accounts for more than 30% of India’s GDP and remains an important engine of economic growth, job creation, income generation and livelihood support. In addition, the proposal to skill both entrepreneurs and students with the help of technology will empower and enhance the productivity of the country altogether. For India to become a digital economy, all villages should have the same access to digital resources as urban areas. To augment this, the setting up of 75 digital banking units in 75 districts of the country is a commitment to taking high-end tech to the bottom of the pyramid. This step will ensure that the benefits of digital banking reach every nook and corner of the country in a consumer-friendly manner. The objective of citizen empowerment with digital growth and supporting fintech will directionally encourage delivering of digitization to India in its 100th year well ahead of time. We are happy that over the past few years we were able to focus on Aspirational Districts and deliver on one aspect of financial inclusion and the score of 95% is encouraging. Going forward, we will focus to align with the Vibrant Villages Program and will continue focusing on the financial inclusion of farmers and senior citizens at the last mile. However, we wish the GST waiver for Banking Correspondents for financial inclusion services could have been taken into consideration. During Amrit Kaal, while our government aims to achieve the vision for India@100, we pledge to make India a digitally and financially inclusive nation. Zidd Aage Badhne Ki.”

Dilip Modi, Founder, Spice Money, said, “It is extremely heartening to see the digital economy and fintech technology-enabled development being a key focus area for Budget 2022-23. The government’s proposal of setting up 75 Digital Banking units in 75 districts of the country and providing online fund transfer between post office accounts and bank accounts will help in adding further tailwinds to expand necessary banking services to the last mile and enable us to take a step further towards our goal of financial inclusion through rural empowerment. The government’s continuous focus on the digital payments ecosystem has paved the way for digital adoption amongst the unbanked and underbanked population of the country especially post the outbreak of the pandemic. We are hoping to see a much higher traction this year that will address the current challenges faced by the citizens and create a #AtmaNirbharBharat. Additionally, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s announcement on the allotment of funds through NABARD to finance start-ups for agriculture & rural enterprises along with the plans to launch delivery of hi-tech services for farmers including the use of Kisan Drones is a great move towards the development of the agri sector as well as for supporting nanopreneurs. We are hopeful that the government’s strong support and initiatives including the introduction of digital rupee by RBI will help in accelerating the growth for the fintech sector and will create multiple avenues for the underserved parts of the country.”

Alok Mittal, Co-Founder & CEO, Indifi Technologies, said, “This year’s budget has taken significant future-forward steps towards financial inclusion; the integration of post office banks, widening the scope of MSME portals and setting up digital banking are all incredible steps in extending access to finance. Moreover, the budget has also addressed the current pain-points of the MSME ecosystem by extending ECLGS, with the additional allocation to be earmarked for hospitality and related industries. This provides renewed impetus for the lending ecosystem to lend to MSMEs and empowers them. Steps taken to leverage portals like Udyam, e-shram, NCS & Aseem will go a long way in further strengthening credit facilitation and enhancing entrepreneurial opportunities for MSMEs. In terms of startups, initiatives taken towards amping up the ease of doing business in India are welcome additions to the budget. Moreover, the steps taken for existing start ups like extending tax redemption and steps taken to attract more investment into the ecosystem is encouraging for the entrepreneurial spirit of India.”

Sachin Bhalla, VP and Country General Manager, Secure Power Division, Schneider Electric India and SAARC, said, “The growth and prowess witnessed in the data center market across the country presents enormous opportunities for businesses and industries alike to reap scalable benefits and drive growth and profit in tandem. The Union Budget 2022 presented by the honourable Finance Minister to grant infrastructure status to data centers and energy storage systems in order to facilitate financing for the industry is a step in the right direction. This intervention will be instrumental for the sector as it advances towards harnessing its increased potential and technological advancements. As we enter the new era of Digital India, we must focus on recognising, addressing, and overcoming environmental challenges, as well as developing a blueprint for navigating the future of sustainable data centre solutions. According to research conducted by JLL, the capacity of India’s colocation data center industry is expected to double by next year; 2023. This in turn, would necessitate the requirement for more than five million square feet of real estate to empower the burgeoning industry. Today’s announcement puts data center development at par with other major sectors in terms of access to long-term and low-cost credit, thereby accelerating efforts towards data localization. We will continue to align with the Government of India’s landmark Aatmanirbhar Bharat vision to promote conscious, clean, and sustainable technology solutions that are self-sufficient and driven by innovation. The solutions that we devise today will shape our future tomorrow as we envision and redefine resilience and operational excellence powered by cutting-edge technologies in data center operations of the future.”

Rajeev Singh, MD, BenQ India, said, “The budget paves way for a digital savvy India, impacting betterment and quality of life and ease of doing business. We are glad that the Government of India, is cognizant and working towards boosting the digital infrastructure and economy. The emphasis on e-infrastructure in education is laudable. Fostering creativity with virtual labs and skilling e-labs for simulated learning environment will uplift education standards. Expansion of PM’s one class, one TV channel program – eVIDYA from 12 to 200 TV channels, Digital University and the initiative of laying optical fiber by 2025 under Bharat Net will uplift broadband connectivity in rural areas, enabling all states to provide supplementary education in regional languages for K-12 classes. This will further increase the demand for advanced hybrid displays which in turn will give a boost to the virtual classroom and Blended & Hybrid Learning. Further, reduced alternate minimum tax rates, surcharges, concessional tax, and new tax schemes for newly incorporated manufacturing entities will uplift the ‘Gati’ of domestic manufacturing and fasten up economic growth. We look forward to a digital-first India in every front.”

Om Malviya, President, Tezos India, said, ” We are happy to note that the FM has announced crypto tax provisions in this budget, legitimising crypto transactions in some way. However, it is disappointing to see that the Government has decided that the income from the transfer of digital assets will be taxed at 30 per cent — which seems to be too high, given that the NFTs, cryptocurrencies and digital assets space is already booming and has immense potential for the economy in the near future. I am hopeful and certain that once the full potential of crypto is realised it will be lowered further.”

Anubhav Jain, CEO and Co-Founder of Rupifi, said, “With COVID-19 playing a significant role over the past couple of years, the Union Budget announced today by Hon’ble FM laid a conscious focus for neutralising its effects and proposed a slew of measure to aid the recovery of an economy hit by the pandemic. As a platform that aims to simplify payments and create financial products to help solve challenges faced by the long tail MSME’s of India, we have been a first-hand witness to the difficulties faced by MSMEs to continue operation in these trying times. The move to extend ECLGS to MSMEs to cope up with pandemic losses is a welcome step and will have a positive impact in assisting the industry in overcoming its struggles. Additionally, recognition of the fact that start-ups have emerged as a growth driver of the economy and incentivising them through measures such as extending the sunset date for eligibility for tax holiday by one more year, will provide the required thrust to the ecosystem. This concurs to our belief towards the ecosystem’s pivotal role in driving India’s growth story.”

Prasanth Madavana, Co-Founder and CEO, Fedo, said, “It is delightful to see healthcare taking centre stage in the Union Budget today. The open platform for the National Digital Health Ecosystem is a welcome move to accelerate digital health push, especially when predictive and preventive healthcare is needed for the nation. The same will aid the fast-evolving healthcare technology sector leverage digital health data and offering solutions that empower people to take control of their health.”

Rishi Chhabra, Country head & GM India and Sri Lanka, Fiserv, said, “The Union Budget 2022-23 supports India’s vision to enhance financial inclusion. Motivating organisations to expand and innovate through technology and integration of post offices to banking services, will take digital banking and payment solutions to the last mile. While this will undoubtedly boost the banking and payment ecosystem by enabling easy access to financial products in the country, it will also create room for technological advancements and innovations to offer simplified, user-friendly and secure financial services and payment solutions.”

Kumar Gaurav, Founder & CEO of Cashaa, said, “The industry was waiting for the government to recognise crypto technology and innovation. Today, it is the beginning of a revolution when the government has itself announced the launch of digital cryptocurrencies. We, as an industry, have taken a step ahead towards adoption of digital currencies. Yes, currently taxation imposed is a little on the higher side, but the industry which was already growing rapidly in the absence of regulation, will now thrive with the government’s clear support.”

Avinash Godkhindi, MD and CEO, Zaggle, said, “The honourable FM has presented a balanced budget with a strong push for digitalization, financial technology and digital payments specifically. As one of the very few profitable SaaS Fintech players, we believe the biggest news is the issuance of the digital currency by RBI which will open a wide range of options and opportunities. Additionally, the endorsement that digital payments are user friendly and economical is a big boost to the morale of FinTechs and all digital payments ecosystem players, the continued support is most welcome. The aim to take digital banking to every citizen is extremely heartening, positive and a bold statement. The plan to create 75 digital banking units in 75 districts is great. Possibly the best way to execute this would be for scheduled banks to partner with FinTechs to roll out these effectively. The Union Budget 2022 has various encouraging initiatives that will propel aspiring entrepreneurs and boost Fintech and startups. To further ease business environment for startups, the government has announced the existing tax benefits for startups to be extended by one more year up to 31st March 2023. Overall the FM has presented a growth oriented budget focusing on capital expenditure that will go a long way in providing the much needed support for India’s long term growth story and help create employment opportunities for the wider section of the society.”

Ranjan Kumar’s, Founder & CEO, Entropik Tech, said, “It’s encouraging to witness that India is becoming a technology-led economy and the Union Budget 2022-23 proves this further. We are glad that the budget plans focused on the growth of the Indian start-ups ecosystem and adoption of technology is promoted across sectors. Focus on sunrise sectors and supportive policies for AI, Geospatial Systems and Drones, Genomics and Pharmaceuticals, etc. can assist sustainable development at a larger scale. Budget investments in R&D to further technological breakthroughs will definitely accelerate the digital economy. Furthermore, tax holiday for another year would definitely help upcoming startups and provide a much-needed boost.”

Naushad Contractor, Founder, Fable Fintech, said, “Union Budget bats for setting long term growth focus by investing in digital rails – to connect, collaborate and transact. One of the largest capex plans coupled with MSME-focused initiatives would spur investments and facilitate job creation – leading to a cycle of cross border trade, earnings, investments and consumption. At the same time, the government’s thrust of launching digital banking units as well as its ambitious plunge into the world of virtual currency will further lead to the need to think afresh in terms of banking infrastructure. At Fable, we believe the future belongs to India and these digital financial reforms will go a long way into developing a robust and inclusive economy.”

Kunal Bahl, Co-founder & CEO, Snapdeal, said, “This is the Digital Revolution Budget. We welcome the government’s emphasis on creating new digital touchpoints to empower multiple aspects of our society and supercharge the startup ecosystem. New initiatives across currency, banking, education, skilling, health, passports, and logistics will enable a large part of the country to benefit from India’s growing digital revolution. The government’s focus on augmenting India’s road, rail, and telecom infrastructure will help further accelerate growth opportunities across Bharat.”

Sanjay Gupta, Vice President and India Managing Director, NXP Semiconductors, said, “The Union Budget 2022 has recognized the digital growth of the country as a primary focus. In order to promote cleaner mobility, the battery swapping policy and interoperability standards that government plans to introduce, incorporates the concept of energy/battery as a service. This will also help in developing the charging station ecosystem which is imperative for massification of EVs. The announcement will give impetus to the private sector to develop sustainable and innovative business models for battery and energy as a service. The scheme for design led manufacturing to be launched for 5G ecosystem as part of PLI will be a boost to the overall telecom and electronic sectors. It will also provide and promote research and development of technology and solutions and will enable affordable broadband and mobile communication. The plan to roll out E- passports with embedded chip and futuristic technology, digital rupee using blockchain by RBI, Drone Shakti and Kisaan Drones and opening Defence R&D for industry, startups and academia are welcome moves that will accelerate the growth and development of the semiconductor industry in the country. As the government continues to accentuate focus on Atmanirbhar Bharat and Digital India, we are hopeful that this year’s budget will propel India towards becoming a global electronic hub.”

Ashish Singhal, Founder and CEO, CoinSwitch and Co-chair Blockchain and Crypto Assets Council (BACC), said, “We welcome the government’s decision to introduce central bank digital currency (CBDC) to accelerate digitization. We also believe that various budget measures to improve digital payments adoption will induct more digital-savvy Indians into the financial ecosystem willing to explore newer forms of investing and wealth creation. The regulatory guidance on tax from the government furthers the mainstreaming excitement of this emerging asset class with over $6bn worth of investments in India. It is also the gateway to the future decentralized world, aka Web3.0. Today’s digital-savvy Indians are willing to experiment with this emerging asset class. The budget provides clarity on taxation and shows the government’s intent to take a business-friendly approach while protecting the interest of consumers and the exchequer. We hope to work with the government to help bring crypto-asset taxation at par with other asset classes and participate in the central government’s vision to promote economic growth.”

Himesh Joshi, Co-founder and CEO, Ayu Health Hospitals, said, “For the startup sector, the move on the extension of tax redemption by another year is a welcome move by the government. A very thoughtful and timely move by the FM is to open a platform for the National Digital Health Ecosystem and National Tele Mental Health Programme, to tackle the adversities of the pandemic. With the current pandemic wave in progress, continued support from the Government in terms of incentivisation for the sector, like Ayushman Bharath schemes will also help in ramping up infrastructure. Additionally, The governments’ continued will to further speed up pay-outs to private hospitals, could lead to more acceptance of the government-run schemes across the sector.”

Winny Patro – CEO & Co-founder, Recordent, said, “Major boost for SMEs is the introduction of E-bill system for transparency and faster payments to Vendors to deal with late payments from Govt. departments. The extention of ECGLS scheme can be of some help to MSMEs. The Union Budget 2022-23 emphasized job creation through the growth of SME sector that directly contributes a large percentage to the Indian economy. One can say that the year’s budget has some considerable relief to MSMEs, especially in supporting Atmanirbhar. Budget is also encouraging to Agricultural farmers to invest and produce more. Overall, small entrepreneurs, startups and innovation are given importance. The announcement for India’s digital currency has been pending for sometime and finally announced today, but like a double edged sword with 30% tax on digital assets. This announcement is a boost for startups and for adoption of NFTs in India.”

Ankit Agarwal, MD, STL, said, “We believe that this budget will prove to be a Shot in the Arm for accelerating India’s Digital, Domestic and Defence ambitions. On the one side, it addresses digital connectivity for all through optical fibre and digital services in 100% of the villages by 2025. On the other side, it sets the foundation for India’s 5G readiness through spectrum auctions, R&D impetus, USOF allocation along with a boost for domestic manufacturing through a timely ‘Design-led manufacturing’ scheme. The move to allocate 68% of the Defence capital procurement budget for domestic players is also a positive stepping stone towards self-reliance in hi-tech manufacturing. At a macroeconomic level, a 35.4% increase in capital expenditure will bring necessary investments and drive consumption. As India braces to reap benefits from this progressive budget, greater policy impetus for procedural simplification, such as single window clearances and more conducive models for private public investments, would act as a multiplier. From a longer-term perspective, more Government investment in digital infrastructure would be absolutely essential for building a robust digital economy. In this context, a digital-first budget philosophy that focuses on digitalization of ministries’ budgetary allocations will ensure across the board acceleration of public services in addition to enhanced connectivity.”

Mandeep Manocha, Co-founder & CEO, Cashify said, “The Budget 2022, is a step in the right direction to connect India to the truly Atma Nirbhar Bharat. Government contributions towards R&D in sunrise opportunities such as AI, semiconductors and its ecosystem as well as the calibration of custom duty rates and concessions towards the domestic manufacturing of high growth electronic items as well as on parts of phone chargers, transformers, wearables will provide the necessary boost required for the upgradation of the sector. Continuing from the previous year’s success, the startup ecosystem has indeed emerged as growth drivers for the country. The rationalization of surcharge being capped at 15% for individual companies and AOPs on long term capital gains along with the period of incorporation being extended till March 2023 for startup tax benefits will support the amplification of the startup ecosystem in India. Additionally, the establishment of an expert committee towards the scaling up of last year’s INR 5.5 lakh crore investments via Venture Capital and Private Equity for the startup ecosystem will prove to be an invaluable asset for the companies entering the space. With continued focus on the caliber of affordable 5G network as part of the PLI Scheme in rural as well as urban areas alongside the allocation of 5% annual collection under USOs is sure to link together the growth in the telecom and consumer electronic sectors.”

Gaurav Agarwal, Co-Founder of Gamezop, said, “Budget 2022 seems to announce India’s growing focus for export income, with a projection to reduce fiscal deficit to 4.5% of GDP from the current rate of 6.9%. It is heartening to see that the Special Economic Zone Act will be replaced with suitable legislation. This is a welcome move after the government had put an end to the 15-year tax holiday last year. The government has the opportunity to bring pro-business legislation in line with global trade norms to bolster exports through the new SEZ norms. For individuals, the option to file revised ITR up to 2 years from the end of the assessment year, as well as regulatory clarity on cryptocurrencies are good moves. Finally, Gamezop recognises the government’s initiative to set up a task force for the promotion of Animations, Visual Effects, Gaming, and Comics. We shall closely follow further developments in the space.”

Radha Dhir, CEO & Country Head, India, JLL, said, “India, with its clarion call for net carbon zero emissions by 2070, has set out cleantech and green energy as the foundational pillars for the infrastructure roadmap under PM GatiShakti. The PM GatiShakti scheme has become the overarching umbrella for all infrastructure augmentation plans for multi-modal connectivity and achieving logistics efficiency across the country. PM GatiShakti is a great push towards making logistics and supply chain much more efficient with reduced logistics costs for all stakeholders. Aligning the National Infrastructure Pipeline under this umbrella, the seven engines of change are roads, railways, airports, ports, mass transport, waterways, and logistics infrastructure. Also, the creation of a Unified Logistics Interface Platform will enable a reduction in logistics cost and time. Additionally, new expenditure announcements were made around the development of Tier II and III cities with an overhaul of their building laws, development of transit-oriented corridors with an intent for building urban capacity. This will be supported by interest-free loans to state governments for the same purposes also incorporate sustainability as a major intent. The announcement on the issuance of sovereign green bonds to support green infrastructure development also indicates the seriousness and the nation’s intent of leading the action against climate change. Support to Electric Vehicle charging infrastructure and production linked scheme for solar panel manufacturing also steps in the same direction. The Budget has provided various policy incentives that are expected to benefit the real estate sector. Policy measures like land record digitization, allocation of INR 48,000 crore under PM housing schemes, completion of 8 million homes by FY 2023 and replacement of SEZ laws are expected to act as catalysts for real estate sector. In addition to this, infrastructure status to data centres, digital connectivity and 5G spectrum allocation will further give a boost to the sector. The land record digitalization programme will build an integrated land Information Management System across the country which will facilitate transparent and litigation free land transfers. This step is expected to provide a big boost for the warehousing and logistics industry. The PM housing scheme is expected to achieve the ‘Housing for all’ objective with 8 million beneficiaries. This will lead to higher growth of affordable housing. The spending on various housing projects is expected to create demand for real estate linked industries. The grant of infrastructure status to data centres is expected to provide access to cheaper and long-term institutional funds which will promote the investments in the sector. The data centre industry capacity is expected to double from 499 MW in H1 2021 to 1008 MW in 2023. Increasing optic fiber network and 5G spectrum allocation would mean higher digital push which will increase real estate demand.”

Abhinav Jain, CEO and Co-Founder, ALMOND Solutions, said, “The Government has shown that they are going all-in on India’s start-up dreams, leveraging it as a big economic lever, with tax benefits. We are extremely happy and thankful that the the redemption of taxes for 3 consecutive years which were offered for three years will be extended by 1 more year. The economic survey has shown that in 2021 14,000+ new startups have been recognised in India, and the trend shows that it’s up 20 times in five years. This was a clear indication for the government that Indian start-up ecosystem needs the push to fly. Talking of flying, the Drone Shakti program signals government’s growing belief in the power of technology, and for a growing tech start-up like us, it also opens up a lot of opportunities. Our innovation teams will take this as a green signal to enter into the drone space and begin developing solutions.”

Kunal Jhunjhunwala, Founder and MD, airpay, said, “Connectivity, convenience and Capex seem to sum up the Union Budget for me. The intent of the Government has to be lauded in terms of not settling for short term quick fixes but setting a definitive vision for spurring long term growth. The budget focused on the expansion of core infrastructure with a never before Capex investment. In the same way, initiatives to empower villages, districts, and urban centres through job creation, skill development, and digitally-enabled financial inclusion are good for both the economy of Bharat and our business model, too. On the other hand, the Budget also laid the stepping stone for India’s indigenous foray into the world of cryptocurrency and recognised virtual digital assets. We are excited to partner with India and Bharat to its next stage of growth and, as an indigenous technology platform, stride together to an Aatmanirbhar Bharat.”

Vidit Aatrey, Founder and CEO of Meesho, said, “The 2022 Union Budget is forward looking and inclusive and lays down the roadmap for an aspirational India. Overall the government’s growth capex announcement will prime the wheels for the entire economy and will have a multiplier impact. Investment led growth which has been adopted by the government of India will result in higher quality growth versus a merely consumption led growth. We are happy about the government’s intent to continue supporting the new age tech ecosystem by forward looking initiatives such as introduction of digital rupee, extending the existing tax benefits of startups by one more year and reduction of overlapping compliances which will improve the ease of doing business in India. From our perspective, we have been keenly watching the developments that impact our sellers and their ecosystem and we see positive moves on those aspects. Emergency credit guarantee scheme (ECLGS) extension upto March 2023 will be helpful for the MSMEs to regain their business above the pre-pandemic levels. Further the revamp of CGTMSE will also help the banks extend lending to the credit starved MSMEs. Finally, duty concessions to promote electronics manufacturing, wearables and hearables devices and mobile phones will boost Indian manufacturing and there by reduce imports in these critical sectors.”

Ramanujam Komanduri, Country Manager, India, Pure Storage, said, “The Union Budget 2022 expectedly turned out to be a growth-oriented budget. The government is focused on reviving the economy through various programs across industries and especially MSMEs, which were hardest hit by the pandemic. The rollout of the Raising and Accelerating MSME Performance program will help address the challenges faced by the sector, through injection of liquidity and ease of compliance norms. The Credit Guarantee Trust for MSME will not only enable them to revive their businesses with additional funds but also enhance employment opportunities and enable job creation. There is also a strong push for digital transformation in the education sector by announcing Digital University and high-quality e-content across regional languages for the students to skill, upskill and reskill the youth. Addressing the structural challenges in the education landscape, the government has focused rightly on upskilling and digital learning. Another impactful announcement is the confirmation of the auction of 5G spectrums this year which will improve accessibility, speed, and availability of the internet across India and particularly in rural areas. This budget’s emphasis on Digital India will further attract investment and put India firmly on the global innovation map.”

Kulmeet Bawa, President and Managing Director, SAP Indian Subcontinent, said, “The budget announcement deserves applause as it takes a stance to address the two biggest needs of the hour: inclusive digital development and climate action. This monumental decision will help drive the country towards a self-reliant future, by prioritizing positive economic growth and an optimistic outlook towards sustainability. Overall, India is setting itself up for a digital first approach by focusing on the much needed digital push that results in holistic job creation, skilling and overall improvement of the population’s livelihood as the nation recovers from the impact of the pandemic.”

Ameen Khwaja, Founder & CEO, pTron, said, “The Union Budget has ushered in positive measures for the electronics sector which will give a boost to the sector, especially in the context of Make in India. The #AatmanirbharBharatkabudget with a huge boost to “Make in India” shall generate 6 million jobs and further create competent and skilled manpower that shall compete globally in terms of the quality of goods manufactured. The electronics manufacturing industry is expected to see 30 percent growth in the coming fiscal and to be worth nearly ₹7 lakh crore. It is heartening to see that the Government of India has acknowledged the exponential potential of this sector. There has been an increase in prices of electronics, smartphones especially, owing to the ongoing chip shortage and other COVID-19 induced factors. With duty concessions and domestic manufacturing boost, prices of electronics are expected to decrease which will further boost the demand in the coming days.”

Subodh Garg, CFO and Growth leader Pickrr said, “Union Budget 2022, with its strong impetus to technology and startups, is future-driven. The Gati Shakti scheme proposed by the Finance Minister in today’s budget will play a crucial role in shaping the logistics sector in the coming years. This scheme will provide a boost to the overall infrastructure landscape in India and will subsequently foster the advancement of the logistic segment. The announcement of the expansion of the highway network by 25000KMS and the development of 100 new cargo terminals will increase the connectivity and will help in the swift movement of goods across the country. We believe that the Gati Shakti scheme will propel the economy by leading to more jobs and opportunities for the youth. With technology playing a crucial role in shaping the country’s startups, it was great to see that the Union Budget 2022 introduced various start-up-friendly policies, tax relaxations to enable innovation and ease-of-doing-business and reduce compliance costs.”

Srividya Kannan, Founder & Director, Avaali Solutions, said, “Avaali welcomes the announcement of Data Exchange among all-mode operators to be brought on Unified Logistics Interface Platform. Digital solutions are the way forward in any kind of enterprise management. Furthermore, to make businesses more efficient & profitable, we require a workforce that is skilled in API. This will be one of the most sought after approach as we pivot ourselves to the needs of a post-pandemic workforce requirement. The finance minister’s digital push for skilling across the digital ecosystem is an impetus in the right direction.”

Sudhindra Holla, Director, Axis Communications, India & SAARC, said, “With the goal to complement macro-growth with micro-all-inclusive welfare and tech-enabled development, we are optimistic that these measures will further strengthen India’s power as a global digital hub. With technology serving as the pivot in this year’s budget, there will be a renewed focus on the criticality of a robust cybersecurity solution. The seven engines of the PM Gati Shakti masterplan encompassing the launch of 400 new-generation Vande Bharat trains and the national highway network will be key drivers in the demand for top notch surveillance solutions. We are upbeat on the slew of recommendations for urban infrastructure development as this will be an impetus for not only generating employment but also reinvigorate the development of smart cities. The rollout of 5G services will further the potential of technology and aid in promoting R&D and commercialization of tech and solutions. The launch of the National Ropeways Development Programme will be a major thrust to the tourism sector and the vision towards developing a self-reliant defence sector will additionally boost the demand of hi-tech surveillance and security solutions.”

Dr Rishi Bhatnagar, President, Aeris Communications, “FM has laid great emphasis on EV ecosystem by announcing battery swapping policy. This will promote and encourage private sector to create innovative and sustainable business models, improving efficiency. I welcome the budget and excited to assist the government in its electrification efforts. AI and IoT provides a clear image of the battery’s charge status. Remote monitoring via IoT can help verify that the station is correctly optimised. The most appealing aspect of the battery swapping infrastructure is that it does not necessitate any investment from local power distribution companies. This will aid in developing the necessary charging station ecosystem proving beneficial to domestic EV market. As a company Aeris Communications has battery management and swapping solutions and working closely with EV OEMs and service providers.”

Srikanth Chakkilam, CEO & Non-Executive Director, Cigniti Technologies, said, “As a Digital Assurance and Digital Engineering company we truly welcome this budget. It is a move to put India into the orbit of unrivalled growth that a 5g enabled economy can usher in all across. Ensuing the pandemic, the world has seen accelerated adoption of technology. Countries, Economies and Companies are racing to become Digital First and this is a firm step from Indian government to ensure we are truly Digital. The budget serves as a blueprint to reach tech-based, inclusive and futuristic growth potential of an aspirational India. The spectrum auction for 5G networks will give telecom companies the license to give the next-generation wireless communication services to the masses. A scheme for design-led manufacturing in 5G will be introduced as part of the PLI scheme that the government runs to boost local manufacturing. The government’s reform measures to facilitate the proliferation and penetration of broadband and telecom connectivity in India will further accelerate India’s dream of digital transformation. The digital rupee using block chain and other technologies will give a big boost to the tech eco-system of India. We perceive this move to be a big positive push for the government’s “Digital India” programme.”

Dayapatra Nevatia, COO and President at Infogain, said, “As expected, thanks to digital tech’s incredible support in helping India Inc. brave the pandemic, this year’s budget takes a ‘digital first’ stance. A significant focus on new initiatives and progressive policy interventions, such as opening defence R&D, promoting drone start-ups, digital university, giving datacentres infra status will propel further adoption of technology across industries. The budget highlights the Governments’ focus on digital inclusion, quite evident with the introduction of the Digital Rupee. This progressive move will give a big boost to India’s digital economy. This also reaffirms our vision and approach to leverage emerging technologies like blockchain to build future-ready solutions with our team at Nggawe Nirman Technologies (recent acquisition). I believe digital literacy will be the key to realizing India’s 5 trillion-dollar economy dream. To create a digital ecosystem for skilling and focus on digital inclusion through 5G and investment in technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and infrastructure, the government will continue strengthening the development of entrepreneurship, productivity, and quality of IT talent in the country, thereby scaling the adoption of new-age technologies across industries.”

Archit Agarwal, Co-founder, Crossbeats, said, “The extension of 1 year for startups is a welcome move as it will, directly and indirectly, help to strengthen the ecosystem. The push to the manufacturing industry is a strategic move to reduce the dependence on imports and upgrade the capabilities of Indian manufacturers to meet the needs internally. It was nice to hear that the growth in the wearable market has been recognized by the government and custom duty calibration should bring more opportunities for domestic brands to provide unique options to the masses. Similarly, an extension of concessional tax regime by 1 year is a welcome move during the pandemic which is not showing any sign of deterrence.”

Arnav Kishore, Co-Founder, Fire-Boltt, said, “It is a welcome announcement by the Finance Minister to focus on the domestic wearable market and boost domestic manufacturing of such devices. This is in sync with the record growth registered recently by homegrown brands in the Indian wearable market, and would further encourage more Indian brands to come up with innovative offerings in the segment. We also welcome the decision to extend tax benefits for startups and the fact that startups are being considered the drivers of the Indian economy’s growth.”

Achin Gupta, Country Head-India at ZOOOK, said, “The push towards manufacturing is a positive move to make India self-reliant and at the same time, the calibrated duty tax has put a 5% extra burden on importers. This move is in itself an indication of the government’s plan for India@100, where basic consumer electronics would be manufactured in India. The recent surge in the country’s wearables market is an indicator of success in the current scenario and the government too is targeting increased domestic manufacturing of wearable, hearable, and high growth electronic items. Also, this will create more jobs in IT sector which will be working closely in sync with hardware capabilities to match the market needs and innovate.”

Arnav Mutneja- Director at Quantum Hi-Tech, said, “The budget seems to create a level playing field for existing and upcoming brands in the market with a push towards creating domestic manufacturing capabilities. The move to calibrate tax structure for items like consumer electronics is a very novel move given the pandemic situation, as it will enable manufacturers to provide more and more lifestyle devices with advanced capabilities. The budget has given a balanced outlook of the economy in the years to come and we hope that the stress on the economy by COVID can be mitigated by this approach in a gradual but concrete manner.”

Avneet Singh Marwah, CEO at SPPL, Exclusive Brand Licensee of Blaupunkt in India, said, “The retail and consumer durables sector contribute a lot to India’s economy. Considering the fact that these sectors have been hit hard in the pandemic, we were surprised to see there were no relaxations or amendments provided to the manufacturers. I would rate this budget on an average. Despite the overachieving GST collection from the past 4 months, the tax on smart TVs above 81 cm remains at 28%, which is the highest in any developing economy. We were expecting it to be reduced to 18% so that people could get TVs at a cheaper rate. There was also a talk that television would be included in the PLA scheme, which was also missing. A few things that interest us in the budget is that the announcement of the launch of 5G this year will help consumers adopt better Smart TVs and content quality. The Government has spoken about adding 80 lakhs affordable homes, which will benefit the consumer electronics industry. Apart from that we were expecting big announcements on inflation, income tax, manufacturing sector etc which could have improved market sentiments. “

Ms. Pallavi Singh, Vice President, Super Plastronics PVT LTD (SPPL), India brand licensee of Westinghouse TV, said, “The FM announced no change to the current tax structure or tax relief has been provided in any form for the existing manufacturing industry and no reduction has been announced on GST rates, which is a disappointment. We hope that the FM’s announcement of carrying on the legacy of SEZ’s and replacing it with a new legislation is a welcome move and as mentioned, existing manufacturing units will be allowed to participate in the same to promote export of goods. The current budget has focused on building the infrastructure in India which is a welcome approach to make India at par with global infrastructure which will also help us in the long run.”

Suman Reddy, Managing Director and Country Head, Pegasystems India, said, “The Union Budget for 2022 laid the foundation for a growth-supportive plan as the nation commences its exit from a pandemic-induced slump. India’s growth is highest among all major economies, and we are in a strong position to withstand challenges. With a keen focus on health, education and startups, we are truly on our way to encouraging further digital adoption, particularly in semi-urban and rural markets. I am delighted with the focus of Budget 2022 on digital and technology. It is a forward-looking blueprint of India’s resilience, capabilities, and determination. The Indian tech startup space continues to witness steady growth, accounting for 70 unicorns with most of them in the IT/knowledge-based sectors. The provisions outlined in this year’s Budget will provide them a game-changing economic transformation opportunity. Additionally, the framework outlined for citizens to skill, reskill or upskill through online training will open up a sophisticated pipeline of jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities. The introduction of central bank digital currency will boost the digital economy and will hugely benefit the Fintech ecosystem. With setting up of 75 digital banking units India is set to become a robust digital economy in the next two years. The ongoing race to deploy 5G will be crucial in addressing and streamlining the avalanche of data and the multitudes of IoT connections that will power the smart cities, utilities, education, healthcare, transportation, and enterprise needs of today and tomorrow. We are truly on our way to building an open, digital and inclusive India within the next 25 years.”

Anshuman Rai, Area Vice President, India, and South Asia, Commvault, said, “The Budget 2022 is a futuristic step taken by the government to complement nation’s macro-growth encompassing digital economy, tech-enabled development, and inclusive sustainable actions. The announcement of data centres being awarded an infrastructure status is truly commendable as this move will be a major thrust to data localization. The new status will enable the data centre sector to get credit at competitive rates and on a long-term basis with enhanced limits. This move will also be a catalyst in realizing India’s vision of attaining the position of a global data centre hub. The establishment of an open national digital health ecosystem, inclusive core financial approach, and digital currency will be instrumental in bridging the digital gap and bolster the Digital India vision further. With an increased focus on digital ecosystem for skilling, through API-based skill credentials and digital universities, we will see a talent surge that is equipped for the jobs of the future. The initiatives for telecom services and modernization for agri sector through land record digitization will be critical in modernizing and broadening the scope of data generation, management, and protection. All these measures will, ultimately, result in a massive amount of data generation which will drive the demand for a robust and unified data management and protection technology further.”

Vamsi Krishna, CEO & Co-Founder at Vedantu, said, “The COVID-induced gap in learning needs to be addressed on priority and EdTech platforms should continue to ensure that students receive uninterrupted learning in such challenging times. By providing students easy access to quality learning, this year’s budget lays a clear emphasis to reduce the gap between students in remote areas and education. Initiatives such as the ‘One Class One TV Channel’ and the E-Vidya scheme is a welcome move that will drive impact at scale and bridge the language divide amongst students from small-town India. We believe that this budget rightly aligns with our vision of democratizing education by providing students access to high quality learning, improving learning outcomes and thereby contributing to a vibrant knowledge economy.”

Alain SPOHR, Managing Director, Alstom India & South Asia, said, “We welcome the progressive and growth-oriented Union Budget presented by the Finance Minister for 2022-23. India is poised to regain its title of the fastest-growing large economy with a 9.2% GDP growth estimated for the coming year. With an enhanced capital expenditure outlay of 35% as compared to last year, core infrastructure segments including Railways and Urban Transport stand to benefit and will have a huge multiplier effect on the economy. Highlight of the budget was the announcement to introduce 400 new Vande Bharat trains over the next three years, introduction of the state-of-the-art KAVACH TCAS signalling systems over 2000 kms of railway network, larger investments to provide for sustainable and integrated urban transport systems. The total budget estimates of Rs 23,875 crore for MRTS & Metro Projects will incentivise faster implementation of projects and the standardisation of metro design systems will provide the much-needed stability for manufacturers. The development of 100 Cargo terminals over the next 3 years will also improve India’s competitiveness in faster and cleaner logistics and freight movement by rail. The announcement of a new legislation regarding Special Economic Zones is a welcome step as it will help India enhance the competitiveness of its exports and integrate successfully with global supply chains. From a policy standpoint, launch of the next phase of Ease of Doing Business (EoDB 2.0), is a step in the right direction. Modernized rules for evaluation of complex tenders especially transparent quality criteria and provisions for payment of 75% of running bills mandatorily within 10 days will encourage faster dispute resolution. Introducing PLI scheme for railway manufacturers and exporters promoting Make-in-India would have been ideal for fast-tracking the implementation of projects and supporting the manufacturing ecosystem. We were anticipating FM’s announcement regarding plans for the private train operations; however, this budget provides the overall push towards economic growth and addresses the key priorities of the Government.”

Vidhu Nautiyal, Chief Revenue Officer, CloudConnect, said, “India’s huge start-up potential, especially in the technology sector will get a boost from the newly announced tax redemption for another one year. In lieu of the global pandemic, the introduced tax benefits will help foster new businesses and attract further investment in the sector. Additionally, with 5G technology being promised in the coming year, the IT sector will invite lucrative offers in terms of innovation, manufacturing and employment opportunities. It’s important to note that the promised amount of Rs. 6,000 crore for the MSMEs in India will prove to be a significant growth factor for the span of next five years. The union budget has very positively taken note of all economic aspects and ensures an upward growth. We are hopeful that the profits will be on the higher end of the spectrum.”

Naveen Jangir, Co-founder of Incluzon, said, “A push for start-ups and MSMEs, along with a focus on job creation across sectors, were prevalent themes in this year’s Union Budget announcement. We applaud the thought leadership that the government has showcased in encouraging digitization and offering tax incentives and schemes that will benefit start-up owners at large. Our country has a legacy of producing some of the world’s sharpest minds, and a large section of our youth today is brimming with an entrepreneurial mindset. Hence, the government’s interest in scaling investments for start-ups across sectors is credible. Furthermore, while the projections are promising from a job creation perspective, analysing how these opportunities reach the masses will be essential.”

Jaya Vaidhyanathan, CEO, BCT Digital, said, “The Union Budget 2022 has lived up to expectations on many fronts. The FM has delivered a budget that addresses holistic measures to take the economy towards the $5 trillion target. Overall finances seem to be in good shape, with fiscal deficit for FY22 at 6.9%, and GST collections at a record Rs.1.4 lakh crore in January. Capex budget has been increased by a steep 35.4%, which is the need of the hour. The highlight for the year has been the unfaltering focus on complementing macro-economic growth through micro measures, such as all-inclusive welfare, domestic production, tech-aided development, and public infrastructure, while pushing the envelope on the energy and climate agenda – a tall order. The fintech industry will welcome announcements such as 100% CBS coverage for the post office, liberal regulation for the GIFT IFSC centre, and heightened emphasis on fintech education. All of these acknowledge the government’s efforts to transform India into a global fintech hub. The FM has also announced FY23 as the timeline for the much-awaited RBI CBDC – the digital Rupee. Crypto enthusiasts will appreciate the clarified stance on cryptocurrency, although gains will be taxed at 30% with 1% TDS.”

Shachindra Nath, Executive Chairman and Managing Director, U GRO Capital, said, “Hon’ble Finance Minister today announced an encouraging set of measures, targeted towards rapid growth of MSME sector and the economy. The extension of ECLGS scheme by Rs. 50,000 upto March 2023, with a special focus on ailing hospitality sector is crucial to facilitate its faster recovery. The credit support has also been provided in the form of Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) revamp with credit of Rs 2 lakh crore for micro and small enterprises. These initiatives will help financial institutions to mitigate risk and stimulate credit outreach to MSMEs. The Government also announced inter-linking of Udyam, e-SHRAM, NCS & ASEEM portals and providing services such as credit facilitation and entrepreneurial opportunities. This will certainly aid in the MSME sector’s formalization and growth. The Government has time and again shown distinctive support to the country’s MSME sector and encouraged its contribution to the Atmanirbhar Bharat imperative. The outlay of Rs 6,000 crore for programmes to accelerate MSME performance will surely assist in boosting the sector’s resilience and operational efficiency. Overall, the measures announced in Union Budget 2022-23 will unlock rapid recovery and holistic growth of the MSME sector.”

Akash Sinha, CEO & Co-Founder, Cashfree Payments, said, “Budget 2022 is a reflection of consumers’ trust in digital-first approach to banking & finance. Economic Survey 2022 highlighted that UPI is currently the single most extensive retail payment system by volume, reiterating its wide acceptance. This has contributed immensely towards driving digital transformation in the country. Additionally, the idea of setting up digital banking units in multiple districts will help in the homogenisation of the financial services in rural and semi-urban geographies. The launch of digital currency by RBI is both encouraging and critical in empowering the digital native youth to take a transformational leap from the conventional currency tools. We have witnessed an increasing use of blockchain technology to simplify and secure the consumer’s journey, and this push was required to encourage innovation in this domain. Fintechs and startups must help stakeholders establish connections with remote locations and provide value-added services to the underserved and unbanked segments. Moreover, the 5G spectrum technology and the scheme for the penetration of fibre optics across villages will boost the growth of rural and gig economies. We also compliment the Hon’ble Finance Minister for the support extended to the startup ecosystem via reforms in taxation, incentives, investments and other benefits that will promote Make in India and Digital India initiatives. We feel that the announcements made during the budget session display the growing importance of startups and their ability to exhibit agility and purpose alike.”

Dharmender Kapoor, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Birlasoft, said, “I would like to applaud the efforts of the Finance Ministry on the Union Budget 2022, which is technology-focused and will be a catalyst for growth. It is apparent from this budget that we are on track to achieve our objective of a truly digital India. The adoption of emerging technologies like blockchain and artificial intelligence in the RBI-backed Digital Rupee, E-Passports, Geospatial Systems, etc. will be a game-changer in terms of strengthening the country’s economy. Additionally, the Union Government’s push towards skilling, reskilling, and upskilling people through the digital ecosystem for skilling and livelihood – DESH-Stack E-Portal, will help address the talent gap and open the doors to newer opportunities. We are also happy to see that the budget is focused on an overall ‘ease of doing business’ theme, which will prove to be a boon for the country in the long run.”

Virender Jeet, CEO, Newgen Software Technologies Limited, said, “The union budget 2022 is progressive and has come with encouraging announcements capital investments and infrastructure for long term growth. There is a clear focus on accelerating digital economy. The introduction of the central bank’s digital rupee using blockchain technology decision to establish 75 digital banks in 75 districts by scheduled commercial banks to encourage digital payments is another encouraging step towards building a digital economy.”

Muneer Ahmad as VP – Sales and Marketing, ViewSonic India, said, “With experience in the technology and EdTech sectors, the expansion of digitization, investment in effective E-learning programmes, and the establishment of efficient SOPs for the same will be game-changers for the business. The implementation of a digital university, which is included in the budget for 2022, will encourage continuous youth upskilling, stimulating the growth of newer technology advances, entrepreneurship, and job prospects. Furthermore, with the promise of 5G technology in the following year, the IT sector is projected to experience lucrative offers in terms of both innovation and manufacturing potential. The budget appears to have struck a chord in the tech industry, and we hope to see a good impact as a result.”

Rekha M. Menon, Chairperson and Senior Managing Director, Accenture in India, said, “Digital led transformation will underpin India’s sustained socio-economic growth. Great to see progressive measures including tech interventions for health, finance, education and skilling in #budget2022.”

Piyush N. Singh, Lead – India Market Unit, Accenture, said, “The Union Budget 2022 outlines some clear initiatives that will improve India’s competitiveness as an economy. The introduction of a sovereign digital currency is an important step. It could not only help in transparent and effective distribution of benefits but also promote the use of blockchain which combined with other infrastructural investments will lead to improved supply chain efficiency. The proposed 5G spectrum auction will boost digital transformation efforts of enterprises, and the policy focus on sustainability such as investments in building energy efficient transport, battery swapping infrastructure and renewable energy will help drive overall sustainable growth.”

Sonali Kulkarni, Lead – Financial Services, Accenture in India, said, “Digital-led initiatives such as bringing all post offices onto the core banking system, and the proposal to set up digital banking units by scheduled commercial banks will boost inclusive development and financial inclusion. Similarly, the government’s continued focus on enabling digital payments will ensure more broad-based adoption of digital payments across all consumer segments in India. Even though the exact shape and form of the proposal to introduce Central Bank Digital Currency (Digital Rupee) in 2022-23 is awaited, it is a welcome measure and a step in the right direction towards ushering in more efficiency, transparency and systemic resiliency. Central Bank Digital Currency has the potential to enable targeted welfare distribution as well as enable more precision in policy initiatives. The extension of the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) scheme till 2023 will be critical to continued economic recovery in industry sectors hit hard by the pandemic, and especially for MSMEs.”

David Li, CEO, Huawei India, said, “The 2022 Budget is one that has its eye set firmly on the future, with a technology-driven sustainable development at the core of its vision. The budget provides for digital enablement for all sectors from digital education, digital university, telehealth and digital banking among others. It also looks at boosting the economy with provisions for the start-up ecosystem, infra, clean energy. The focus on skilling, digital learning and clean mobility will create opportunities for Indian youth and will also go a great way in addressing the skill gap in various industries. It is such inclusive policies that will boost the outcome of the budget.”

Raghu Gullapalli, Managing Director, Lead – APAC and Middle East for Industrial & Mobility, Accenture, said, “The intended introduction of a Battery Swapping Policy is a welcome move as it could encourage stakeholders in the value chain to devise innovative business models which reduce the lifestyle cost of EVs. This combined with the focus on interoperability which will help address ongoing range and battery depletion concerns, could boost EV adoption in the country.”

Matthew Foxton, Regional President India, IDEMIA, said, “The budget echoes India’s vision towards inclusive development and building a truly ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’. FM’s key announcements on the scheme for design-led manufacturing to be launched for the 5G ecosystem is a very encourging move for companies who are looking at making India as a their hub for 5 G connectivity manufacturing. Also, the plan to roll out e- passports with embedded chips and futuristic technology are welcome moves that will revalidate India’s focus in creating secure and convenient identity for its citizens. The upcoming rollout of 5G cellular networks will facilitate a new surge in the adoption of IOT solutions for connected vehicles, smart cities, healthcare, and the metering of utilities, as well as critical communications used by fire, police, and other emergency services.”


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