New Delhi: The Union Minister of Finance & Corporate Affairs, Nirmala Sitharaman, started her pre-budget consultations with different stakeholder groups in connection with the forthcoming General Budget 2020-21 in New Delhi today. Her first meeting was with stakeholder groups from digital economy, fintech and startups.
The main areas of discussion during the meeting included data issues such as use of big data technology, phenomena by analysing large data sets, use of big data technology for SME sector, and unleashing the power of big data for public governance.
Other issues which dominated the discussion included digital infrastructure & role of government, regulation of digital economy especially in privacy, financial regulation, ease of doing business environment for startups, infrastructure gaps for digital India, and taxation issues, among others.
Along with the Finance Minister, the meeting was attended by Anurag Thakur, Minister of State (MoS) for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Finance Secretary, Rajeev Kumar, Atanu Chakraborty, Secretary, Economic Affairs, Ajay Bhushan Pandey, Revenue Secretary, Ajay Prakash Sawhney, Secretary, Department of Electronics & Information technology, Anshu Prakash, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications, Pramod Chandra Mody, Chairman, CBDT, P.K Das, Chairman, CBIC, Dr K.V. Subramanian, Chief Economic Advisor and other senior officials of the Ministry of Finance.
According to a Press communication from the Ministry, representatives of digital economy, fintech and startups shared their views and suggestions regarding big data, incentives for encouraging setting up of data centres, fiscal incentives for data localisation, incentives for pushing digital penetration in rural areas, corporate guarantee to startups for competing with other nations, rationalisation of MAT tax rate, tax exemption for start-up units, creation of specific agency for looking after cross border financial crimes, increasing women employment (gender dividend in skill development), training youth in skill development along with international internships and incentivising Research & Development (R&D) within India.
While the experts suggested improvements in their respective fields, they also gave a variety of solutions to the sector specific problems. Many speakers suggested giving tax sops to startups and nurturing them in the country.
The participants included Deepak Acharya, Global Chief Legal Officer (CLO), Wipro Ltd., Mandeep Singh Puri, Chairman, Electronic and Computer Software Export Promotion Council, Ms Vishakha Saigal Jio Mobiles, Dheeraj P. Sharma, Director, IIM Rohtak, George Paul CEO, MAIT, Ashish Aggarwal, Head of Public Policy, Nasscom, Suneel Maggo, President, Chamber of Startups, Industries and Entrepreneur (India) Council, Raj Nehru, Vice Chancellor, Vishwakarma Skill University, Anand Nandkumar, Indian School of Business, Amrit Manwani, President, ELCIN, Peyush Bansal, Founder, Lenskart, Amit Bansal, Head of Tax, Uber India and South Asia, H. Nagaraj, Financial Controller, Velankani Electronics (P) Ltd., Virat Bhatia, Managing Director, Strategy & Policy, Apple India, N.K. Goyal, President, Telecom Equipment Manufacturers Association of India, Pankaj Mohindroo, Chairman, Indian Cellular & Electronics Association. Ms. Deepa Mani, Professor, Indian School of Business (ISB), Hari Om Rai, Chairman & Managing Director, Lava International Ltd and Madhur Deora, Paytm.
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