The Tech Panda asked the hospitality, F&B, real estate, agtech, & women oriented sectors about their expectations from the Union Budget 2022.
Last year, real estate received extended tax rebates. But the F&B and the hospitality sector weren’t happy. In agtech, the budget promised 1.5 times MSP against the cost of production across all commodities as well as an increase in agriculture credit.
While overall, business has had to suffer because of COVID-19, some sectors have been hot worse than others. For example, post COVID-19, the hospitality sector has had to slash prices while having to promise clean stays. Women led sectors, which were already struggling, have been thrown back into uncertainty by the Omicron threat.
Startups and organisations are thus looking to the Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Union Budget 2022 for support. They say it’s vital to safeguard the industry during such prolonged periods of uncertainty in business prospects.
The Tech Panda asked organisations in hospitality, F&B, real estate, agtech, & women oriented sectors what they expect from the Budget.
Access to funding, extended repayment periods for loans
“We interact with hundreds of hoteliers every day, and we’ve discovered that the industry’s main goal is to give hotel owners the status of ‘infrastructure,’ since this will solve a large number of the challenges that hotels and hospitality firms face. The step will also help the industry’s operational survival and encourage investment in the sector. Access to funding, extended repayment periods for loans, and the resulting reduction in the gestation period will make hotel investments more enticing and sustainable. More hotels would lead to more jobs and growth.”
Clarify rules & tax systems for homestay villa segment
Adequate law & policy acknowledgment for homestays
“The homestay villa segment, in particular, is always in a state of flux, and we would benefit from more clarity at the national level regarding the rules and tax systems that apply to this particular segment of the market. Current legislation is fairly scattered, with each state having its own set of regulations governing what defines a homestay or bed and breakfast, with the latter being more of a recognition than an official policy. We’re attempting to streamline the process by registering each and every property as a BNB across the country.”
“In the last two years, travellers have begun to identify homestays, and they have grown to be an exceedingly vital and significant component of domestic tourism, employment-generating paths, and the resulting wealth of local communities around the country. Consequently, adequate law and policy acknowledgment is required, and we anticipate seeing proposals in this year’s national budget.”
Reintroduce inputs tax credit
Ease process for multiple licenses
Allocate special fund for speedy recovery
“It takes multiple licenses to establish a food & beverage business in India. We expect the government to address this in the upcoming budget. Additionally, the sector requires reintroduction of the inputs tax credit. Also, considering the sector has been struggling due to the pandemic havoc, it is necessary to provide it with relief package and special fund allocation for speedy recovery.”
Interest free loans, greater subsidies, & reduction in tax structure
“The food and beverage industry has incurred heavy losses due to the pandemic, which makes it essential for us to look up to the Union Budget 2022-23 for relief. In order to accelerate the recovery of the sector, this budget should enable interest free loans, greater subsidies, and a reduction in tax structure.”
“Additionally, since most of the F&B businesses fall under Micro and SMB categories they should be offered extended moratorium. Considering the current situation, business losses should be allowed to be carried forward from the existing 8 years to 12 years.”
Allow raising cheaper credit from financial institutions
Reduce GST & loan rates & deduct TDS rates
“The real estate industry is the second highest employment generator in the country and hence the sector expects the government to award the long due industry status which will allow raising cheaper credit from financial institutions. The government should also consider reduction in GST and loan rates along with deduction in TDS rates to provide relief to the reviving sector post the global pandemic. There must be measures and initiatives undertaken to make the sector more technologically advanced thus strengthening the infrastructural backbone of the nation.”
Separate fund for R&D
Subsidy of 50% or INR10 lakh, whichever is less for buying drones
Form committee on & subsidize crop insurance
Ensure all insured farmlands by banks are geotagged & Aadhaar linked
“A separate fund to be earmarked for Research and development in the field of Remote Sensing, UAV for crop yield estimation and crop claim management. State technical units to be earmarked funds for the purpose.
“Subsidy of 50% or INR10 lakh, whichever is less for buying drones and its accessories to be used for agri research to both research units and private sector agritech companies.
“Formation of committee on crop insurance Third party claim administrators to come out with draft regulation and allow 100% FDI as it is for TPA in motor and health.
“Subsidize crop insurance premium to INR10 for all farmers (farmers share rest premium to be paid by the central government and state government in the ratio of 70:30) with landholding less than 1 hectare with compulsory coverage by all banks and FIs.
“All insured farmlands by banks should be geotagged and Aadhaar linked. The banks to be paid additional 2% of the premium over and above 4% being paid by the insurers.”
Better formal sector job opportunities for women
Higher capital expenditure on education & health for women
Prioritize spending on gender budgeting to reduce inequalities
“The Union Budget for 2022-23 will be crucial for women as they have suffered disproportionately due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Government’s latest Periodic Labour Force Survey shows the unemployment rate for women was 11.8% in Jan-Mar 2021 – even before the second wave of the pandemic hit – as compared to 10.5% in Jan-Mar 2020.
“We hope that the Budget for 2022-23 will prioritize spending on gender budgeting to help reduce inequalities. The pandemic has forced more and more women to move to casual labour – 9.3% in Jan-Mar 2021 as against 7.7% in Jan-Mar 2020. So, the Budget needs to not just reverse this trend but create the ground for better formal sector job opportunities for women. This requires work from the ground up, including higher capital expenditure on education and health – issues that are key for women.
Read more: Budget 2022 expectations: Health & wellness
“A recent paper by the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy found that the gender budgeting for the 2021-22 Union Budget was only about 5% of the total budget. We hope that the Budget for 2022-23 will prioritize spending on gender budgeting to help reduce inequalities.
“We are hopeful that 2022-23 will be a year of greater financial inclusion and easier access to credit for more Indians at a personal and enterprise level. We welcome the changes at the top level from the Government and sector-specific regulators.”