Interim Budget 2019: Will FM Piyush Goyal surprise the nation tomorrow?

The Interim Budget will be presented by Finance Minister Piyush Goyal in the Lok Sabha on February 1. This is the last Budget of the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. Much has been said and talked about with respect to the same in the past few weeks. Anticipation is high on the matter of tax slab change, and experts are expecting a surprise announcement from Piyush Goyal. 

After Opposition victories in three state polls last month, and given the need to call Lok Sabha elections by May, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is facing some discontent over depressed farm incomes and doubts over whether his policies are creating enough jobs. The budget, which is interim and is likely to be followed by a full one in July, is expected to project the country's economic growth rate at around 7.5 per cent for the next financial year, and expand capital spending on railways, roads, ports by 7-8 per cent, and estimate a revenue increase of about 15 per cent, according to reports.

But the main focus could be on the rural sector and the urban middle-class. Finance minister Piyush Goyal is going to present the Budget in the absence of Arun Jaitley, who is currently in the United States for medical treatment.


7:31 AM IST It indicates the level of support extended by the Reserve Bank of India to the government's borrowing programme.

7:07 AM IST Before the Budget session begins in the Parliament, let us look into some jargons that will help you understand Interim Budget 2019: Revenue Receipt: It includes proceeds of taxes and other duties levied by the Centre, interest and dividend on investments made by the government, fees and other receipts for services rendered by the government.

9:50 PM IST To promote manufacturing of electric vehicles in India, import duties on fully built batteries need to be increased while the same should be reduced on lithium ion cells, motors and motor controllers, according to electric-two wheeler maker Ather Energy.

9:47 PM IST In rural India, almost half of grade V students cannot read a grade II text and more than 70% them cannot do division, said the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2018. These numbers indicate a fall in standards over the last 10 years.

9:29 PM IST The yields on India's benchmark sovereign bonds were hovering around 7.6 per cent ahead of the country's interim budget, according to a report by Singapore banking group DBS. The yields of the most traded 2028 INR sovereign bond were bid in the 7.5-7.6 per cent range and are up around 18 basis points since late-2018.

9:27 PM IST Discount of 2 percentage points on loans for businesses with annual sales of less than 50 million rupees; government to compensate banks for the costs

9:17 PM IST No economy in the world can work without giving priority to the energy sector. Our per capita energy consumption is still one-third of the world average: Dharmendra Pradhan

9:12 PM IST The disinvestment target for 2019-20 (FY20) is likely to be around Rs 80,000 crore, the same as that of 2018-19 (FY19), said sources in the government. The Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (Dipam) hopes for a successful go at privatising Air India. 

9:11 PM IST The government has not allocated the capital budget needed for payments that were falling due this year. The navy projected to the defence ministry a capital requirement of Rs 30,358 crore, but was allocated only Rs 19,083 crore, a shortfall of 37 per cent.

9:09 PM IST Advance estimates say growth in the last year of this term of the Narendra Modi government will be higher than in 2013-14, the last year of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) regime, though the potential for higher growth was greater. Growth was 6.4 per cent in 2013-14. 

9:05 PM IST Farm-gate prices of most commodities have slumped in the four and half years of this government mainly owing to a drop in global commodity prices and oversupply in domestic markets, along with a decline in demand. Though the first two years, 2014 and 2015, saw back-to-back drought, the production of foodgrains and oilseeds fell marginally.

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Budget terminology: Monetised Deficit

It indicates the level of support extended by the Reserve Bank of India to the government's borrowing programme.
Before the Budget session begins in the Parliament, let us look into some jargons that will help you understand Interim Budget 2019:

Revenue Receipt: It includes proceeds of taxes and other duties levied by the Centre, interest and dividend on investments made by the government, fees and other receipts for services rendered by the government.

Centre's divestment target for FY20 to likely be around Rs 80,000 crore

The disinvestment target for 2019-20 (FY20) is likely to be around Rs 80,000 crore, the same as that of 2018-19 (FY19), said sources in the government.
The Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (Dipam) hopes for a successful go at privatising Air India. 

Focus must be on skilled labour to tackle unemployment

Budgetary allocation to the ministry of skill development and entrepreneurship (MSDE) has witnessed a 237% increase over the last four years, from Rs 1,007 crore (actual expenditure) in 2015-16 to Rs 3,400 crore (budget estimate) in 2018-19, according to ministry data. 

Budget expectations: Agriculture

The government is expected to project economic growth of around 7.5 per cent for the next financial year, while expanding capital spending on railways, roads and ports by 7-8 per cent.

Agriculture
 
Farm relief package itself could run to at least Rs 1 trillion ($14.04 billion)
Set to earmark about Rs 1.8 trillion for food subsidies in the fiscal year
Expected to waive premium for taking insurance policy for food crops
Proposal for waiving interest on crop loans for farmers who pay on time
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