Budget 2019 expectations: Tax sops for Fintech firms and Startups, roadmap for Digital India 2.0
Budget 2019 expectations: Financial Year 2019 has started on a good note for the Fintech industry as it received support from both the Ministry of Finance and the RBI.
Budget 2019 expectations: Financial Year 2019 has started on a good note for the Fintech industry as it received support from both the Ministry of Finance and the RBI. Several new product launches, bank and fintech collaborations and huge investments coming into the sector have been seen now. However, as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman prepares to present her first budget of the new government, expectations of the sector have only gone up.
It is expected that the coming budget will offer further tax sops as well as some special incentives offered to startups, and overall reduction in corporate tax.
Gaurav Chopra, Founder and CEO, IndiaLends, told Zee Business Online, "We hope that this budget would have initiatives aimed at driving digital adoption and expect the new government to push forward new reforms as part of ‘Digital India 2.0’."
Chopra said the government has taken tremendous efforts to promote 'Digital India' but there is scope for growth especially in interiors of the country. "After the Aadhaar verdict, we hope that the government brings more clarity in the e-KYC process. A policy framework and budget allocation, if placed, for the adoption of the Electronic National Automated Clearing House (e-NACH) and DigiLocker technologies can act as a catalyst in further helping the industry and consumers at large."
Rachitta Juneja, CMO Letstrack, said, "We expect that there should be a fast implementation of the procedures to ease startup funding. We also expect a strategic plan to promote AI in various sectors, as this would need close coordination of different ministries with Information Technology ministry and tech startups. Budget 2019 should focus more on Smart cities and Digital India initiative in order to shape the IT infrastructure and increase the adoption of technology. Lastly, we need policies to be implemented for higher use of technology to make systems efficient and transparent."
On cybersecurity, Chopra demanded the government should implement stricter laws and policies and conduct programmes to spread awareness about cyber threats and how to deal with them.
Vinay Bagri, Co-founder and CEO, NiYO, said, "In the first full budget of the new government, we expect a slew of measures from the government to ease the operating environment for fintech startups, particularly in the wake of the NBFC liquidity crisis and the setback to digital on-boarding through eKYC. "We expect the government to push forward new reforms under the umbrella of 'Digital India 2.0', as well as strengthen the measures to achieve financial inclusion. We are hoping for tax relaxations for fintech companies and payments players which can pave the way for the fintech industry to increase investments in product innovation and customer service."
Rajesh Loomba, Managing Director of Eco Rent A Car, expects this budget will put "some focus on tourism as a generator of employment and not be treated as an elitist activity’.
Loomba further said GST needs to be revised for various sectors especially the hospitality sector where it is currently very high especially for Self Drive Car Rental services. "I hope the government will give its due importance to the Tourism and Passenger transport business and relax the taxation in the coming financial year. There are no incentives on new investment whereas tourism and tourist transportation creates the most employment per rupee of investment."
Gautam Raj Anand, Founder and CEO, Hubhopper, said, "With podcasting industry gearing up for a transformational year with the convergence of media, technology and telecom industries coupled with the government’s vision to further accelerate the Digital India program, most experts also support that the Budget 2019 will only help to streamline this transition more positively."