Deepak Shetty, CEO & Managing Director, JCB India
The Union Budget 2022-23 continues to give a strong push to infrastructure development by increasing the capital investment outlay by 33% to Rs 10 lakh crore - almost three times the outlay in 2019-20. This will create demand for construction equipment and create jobs, apart from removing infrastructural bottlenecks. The Budget lays the path for India’s development to become a $5 trillion economy. Continuing provision of 50-year interest free loan to state governments for one more year will spur investments in infrastructure.
The Budget has a multipronged approach to push the country towards an infrastructure-led growth. Supporting Urban Infrastructure and the move to prioritise 100 critical transport infrastructure projects, for last and first mile connectivity for ports, coal, steel, fertilizer, and food grains sectors is welcome. For this, the investment of Rs 75,000 crore, including Rs 15,000 crore from private sources, will further create demand for construction and create jobs, apart from removing the infrastructure bottlenecks.
Lastly, while focusing on the short-term, the Government has also looked at the long-term by laying out the vision on Green Hydrogen and setting a target of 30 mmt by 2030. We look forward to partner with the Government’s journey to make India the growth engine of the world.
Sanjay Gupta, CMD, APL Apollo Tubes
Considered as the backbone of the country’s infrastructure growth, the steel industry is to get a considerable boost with the inclusion of infrastructure development in the seven priorities of Budget 2023. We equally welcome the respected Finance Minister’s comprehensive focus on proposing 100 critical transport infrastructures for last and first-mile connectivity with an investment of Rs 75,000 crore that promises demand for steel to stay robust in the market. The annual allocation of Rs 10000 crore for urban infrastructure development will also lead to demand creation for steel.
Manish Bhatnagar, MD, SKF India
The Budget is progressive and growth-oriented, given the focus on capital expenditure, green mobility, clean energy, and agriculture. It further defines the roadmap for achieving net-zero emissions by 2070. At SKF, we support India’s aspirations of inclusive and sustainable growth, and we remain committed to achieving net-zero emissions across all our production facilities by 2030 and across our supply chain by 2050. We will continue to develop intelligent and clean products and solutions to meet the evolving needs of industries and further support their decarbonization efforts. Further, the Budget will also help the Indian economy reap benefits from local manufacturing, infrastructure development, and technology advancements, and will firmly position the country on the path to accelerated growth.
Kshitish Nadgauda, Senior VP & MD, Louis Berger WSP
We welcome the government’s move of hiking the capital expenditure for infrastructure development by 33% to Rs 10 lakh crore. The Union Budget of 2023-24 is progressive, growth-oriented, and inclusive, with a major focus on infrastructure investment as one of the seven key priority areas for the coming fiscal year and has identified 100 top priority projects. The establishment of an infrastructure finance secretariat will further aid in attracting more private investment and streamlining public-private partnerships. Moreover, the setting up of the Urban Infrastructure Development Fund will provide an impetus to infrastructure development in Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities across the country. This will accelerate the efficient use of land resources, enable adequate resources for urban infrastructure including transit-oriented development, enhanced availability and affordability of urban land, and, most importantly, job creation. It is widely accepted that such investments in infrastructure development, especially urban mass transit, enables urban centres to flourish and attract quality investment, and result in a vastly improved quality of life for residents.
In addition, there are other infrastructure outlays such as 50 new airports and heliports, coastal shipping, etc. which will enhance intermodal connectivity, which are significant steps in enhancing mass transit. These steps will help in achieving the expected goal of the $5 trillion GDP economy by 2024-25.
Manish Mehan, CEO & MD, TK Elevator India
Union Budget 2023-24 has continued the government’s focus on the India growth story. In this year’s budget, the GOI has recognized infrastructure and investment as one of the 7 priorities that the budget is based on. The 33% higher capital outlay of Rs 10 lakh crore on infrastructure development will build a foundation for Tier 2 & Tier 3 cities to transform into centers of economic growth. It will have a multiplier effect on the overall economy including the realty sector and allied industries. The government’s decision to increase the PMAY Fund by 66% to Rs. 79,000 crore will give a big boost to affordable housing and contribute to the overall growth and development of the country. Furthermore, the announcement of 50 tourist destinations to be selected through challenge mode and developed as a whole package for domestic and international tourism is a welcome initiative by the government. This has the potential to transform the area from a tourist destination into a second home or weekend getaway. All these moves will unlock new opportunities for the real estate as well as the elevator industry in the long run.
Harsh Vardhan Patodia, President, CREDAI National
Through the Union Budget 23–24, the Government continues to focus on the empowerment of youth, women, OBCs, and farmers. With a keen focus on the future of the country with a growth-oriented budget, we applaud the FM’s vision of enabling an inclusive and sustainable development growth chart for infrastructure. An increased capital outlay for a third year in a row to INR 10 lakh crores amounting to 3.3% of the GDP, a hike of 66% to over 79,000 crores for PM Awas Yojana, and the Rs 9,000 cr Credit Guarantee Scheme for MSMEs, will have a positive multiplier effect on economic growth and help realize the PM’s vision for ‘Housing for All’. Continuing its focus on urban planning reforms to develop sustainable cities for tomorrow, the allocation of INR 10,000 crores to the NHB for infrastructure development, the highest ever railway outlay at Rs 2.4 lakh crore, and increased regional connectivity through 50 more additional airports, along with other projects will also boost regional connectivity and will add impetus for infrastructure development, especially in tier-2 and 3 cities which will help the Indian economy to remain less impacted by a global slowdown.
Ramesh Nair, CEO India & Managing Director, Market Development, Asia, Colliers
Overall, the Budget focuses on driving consumption and capital investment to support growth. This will have a multiplier effect on various sectors such as real estate. At the same time, the government’s commitment towards affordable housing continues with a significant jump in PMAY allocation. On the commercial front, the continuous push to startups will give a fillip to activity in commercial office space. Further, the Budget has brought parity in taxation of incomes for REIT/InvIT unit holders by bringing in ‘repayment of debt’ under the tax bracket.
Sunil Puri, Managing Director - India & SAARC Operations – CASE Construction Equipment
The bolstering of infrastructure development is among the seven priority areas in the Union Budget’s proposal. With 50 new airports being targeted, INR 2.7 lakh crore being allocated for road infrastructure, and INR 2.4 lakh crore for railways, the government is rightly placing the onus on infrastructure development, as it has in recent years. We are also enthused by the announcement of an urban infrastructure development fund and the opportunities presented for private investment in infrastructure through newly established Infrastructure Finance Secretariat.
Lalit Beriwala, Director, Shyam Steel Industries and Sr. Vice President, Merchants Chamber of Commerce & Industry
I welcome the Union Budget 2023 as it is both balanced and target driven. With increased emphasis on education, health, infrastructure development, employment generation in both rural and urban areas, skill development, and promotion of digital economy through “Make AI in India” aiming to set up three specialized AI Centres in educational institutes enlisting private participation, National Data Governance Policy, etc., green growth , strengthening railway connectivity, etc., the Budget will ensure inclusive growth through Saptarshi-7 priorities.
I strongly believe that the increased capital investment outlay by 33.4% to Rs 10 lakh crore, the highest ever outlay of Rs. 2.4 lakh crore for the Railways, identification of 100 infrastructure projects for end-to-end connectivity for ports, coal, steel, and fertilizer sectors, will give a fillip to the industrial development of the country. Besides, continuation of the provision for 50-year Interest Free Loans to States to be spent on capital expenditures, with a focus on infrastructure, is expected to be a game changer in the infrastructure development sector, which will benefit not only the steel industry, but also industries across sectors.
Moreover, simplifying tax benefits for industries in terms of enhanced limits for micro enterprises and professionals to avail benefits, presumptive taxation as well as provision for allowing deduction of payments made to MSMEs only when payment is made, and benefits provided for start-ups, will accelerate the country’s economic growth. It’s a people-centric budget for the improvement of the quality of life of all sections of the people and we wholeheartedly appreciate it.
Abhyuday Jindal, MD, Jindal Stainless
We welcome the Union Budget 2023-24; it’s truly a blueprint for India at 100, as the Hon’ble FM stated. The Indian economy has emerged as the 5th largest in the world, and a progressive Budget was much required to fuel India’s potential. The government has taken a strong decisive stand to incentivize manufacturing industries to decarbonize by investing 20K crore in the Green Hydrogen Mission, while also galvanizing 35K crore outlay towards setting up appropriate infrastructure with priority capital investment. This a clear indication that the government has continued to be resolute in its aim of achieving energy transitions and create a circular economy, which meet our Net Zero carbon emission targets. Even the Green Credit Program to encourage behavioural change by incentivising companies and individuals is the need of the hour.
Speaking specifically for the stainless-steel industry, we are grateful that the Hon’ble Finance Minister has continued the exemption on ferrous scrap and stainless-steel scrap. This is a saving grace for industries like ours where input materials are domestically not available or are inadequate, and who still have to compete with duty-free imports of subsidized finished goods in the market.
The unfair dumping practices of our neighboring Asian economies has not been addressed in the Budget, but we are hopeful that remedial measures will be taken after due government proceedings.
On the domestic front, the capex of 10 lakh crore and the capital outlay of 2 lakh crores put up for the modernisation and expansion of the Indian Railways is the highest ever outlay. With the strategic partnership between JSL and the Indian Railways, we forecast a significant increase in the demand for critical stainless-steel components in the fiscal year. 50 additional airports, helipads, water aero drones, and advanced landing grounds etc will aid easier access and enhanced construction activity. Improving the ease of doing business, over 39k compliances have been reduced, and over 3k legal provisions have been decriminalized, paving the way for more trust-based governments.
Efforts for overall knowledge and skill enhancement of youth will go a long way in ensuring informed citizens and skilled workforce. Measures announced to uplift the agriculture sector by creating massive, decentralized storage facilities, is sure to intensify consumption of stainless steel in the food and food processing industry.
I am happy to see the focus brought in by this Government in AI. The Budget proposed setting up of Centres of Excellence for AI in collaboration with top educational institutes, and with industry partnership. With its focus areas being agriculture, health, and sustainable cities, I’m hopeful that the country will witness a new wave of technological advancement in the next couple of years.
The government’s initiative to modernize the country’s urban sewage systems entails a public policy that works for the welfare of the common man. We appreciate this enhanced focus on the scientific management of dry and wet waste. Renewed focus on vehicle scrapping should also help augment the domestic supply of scrap material. It was heartening to see mention of coastal shipping promotion through PPP mode, which is expected to bring down costs of transportation.
All in all, I am confident that all the upcoming projects offer ample opportunity for manifold applications for the stainless-steel industry to contribute towards building India’s brighter tomorrow.
Nikhil Agarwal, President CJ Darcl Logistics
This is the first Budget of Amrit Kaal, and we believe that this is a budget aimed at fostering growth. We are sure that the huge rise in capital expenditure by 33% will have an incremental effect on the overall growth of the economy. Infrastructure sector is the backbone of any economy, and the government has been pushing for the sector’s growth for its multiplier effect and linkage effects in terms of job creation.
Infrastructure and development are among the seven priorities of the Budget 2023. The newly announced one hundred critical transport infrastructure projects will help the country to ensure energy and food security as these are critical for India as it targets to become the third largest economy in the world in the next 6-8 years. The government has also decided to inject Rs 2.40 lakh crore in the railways in order to derive a positive outcome on environment sustainability.
As Budget 2023 focuses on promoting coastal shipping, it will play a critical role in the economy’s competitiveness, expansion, and long-term sustainability, which is an under-tapped sector at the moment. Also, the announcement of 100 labs for developing applications using 5G services will bring in changes across the transport sector, including increasingly smart and efficient logistics and improved urban transportation with the implementation of Mobility as a Service (MaaS) platforms. The Budget 2023 has demonstrated a good balance between today’s needs and the future’s demand.
Harsh Pareek, Regional Sales Director, India and SAARC, Trimble Solutions
The Union Budget 2023 sets the vision for a technology-driven and knowledge-based economy. Further, the welcome push for creating sustainable cities of tomorrow, and the announcement of incentives for green building practices has created the perfect storm for the construction industry players to embrace cutting-edge technologies and help India move towards realising its goal to achieve net zero emissions in ‘Amrit Kaal’.
Overall, the Indian construction industry has many reasons to cheer this budget, from the Urban Infrastructure Development Fund for tier-2 and tier-3 cities to setting up of Infrastructure Finance Secretariat for encouraging private investments in infrastructure. The increased outlays for capital expenditure, now at 3.3% of GDP, and higher allocation for the PM Awas Yojna will provide a major boost to urban housing and infrastructure development, in turn creating new growth opportunities for both real estate and infrastructure companies.
Puneet Dalmia, Managing Director, Dalmia Bharat
The Union Budget 2023 is the providential threshold for creating India of the ‘Amrit Kaal’. As eloquently portrayed by the Finance Minister as the “Saptrishi” or 7 priorities, the Budget has created a very purposeful direction and vehicles to capture India’s rightful place amongst the ‘Top 3’ major economies of the world.
Manoj Tulsian, Joint Managing Director & CEO, Greenply Industries
The announcement of a targeted push in the green growth sector in the Union Budget of 2023–24 is a significant step in India’s journey towards rapidly developing sustainable, low-emission products. This initiative is likely to generate substantial economic opportunities for decarbonization and sustainable product growth. With Greenply’s approach to sustainability, we have already launched an internal initiative called “ESG 360” with a three-year plan for integrating ESG factors into our strategy and daily operations. Greenply’s E-0 product line, investment in research and development, and advanced toxicology studies, have pioneered a shift toward environmental sustainability in the wood panel industry.
It is noteworthy that the Green Credit Program under the Environment (Protection) Act will undoubtedly encourage more large companies to invest in the research of greener product variants by incentivizing not only corporate but also individual sustainable and responsive actions.
Additionally, the increase in capital expenditure by 33 percent to Rs 10 lakh crore in public infrastructure will be a positive boost for the entire building and construction industry. The focus on urban infrastructure will have a significant impact on the real estate sector and will push the growth trajectory in the wood panel sector.
Deepak Tiwari, COO, KSH Logistics
Budget 2023 is prioritizing the logistics and supply chain sector with a significant allocation of a capex of Rs 10 lakh crore in infrastructure, roads, and railways, which will help the industry to accelerate growth. We believe that this initiative taken by the government will ensure timely creation of exceptional transportation infrastructure and improve logistics throughout the country. On the other hand, the emphasis on green energy and skill development demonstrates a commitment to sustainability and growth, positioning the industry for a more efficient, environmentally conscious, and skilled future.
Harpreet Singh Malhotra, Chairman & Managing Director, Tiger Logistics
Budget 2023 has taken a proactive and integrated view on Logistics, given the goal of the government to lower the cost of logistics from its current 14% of GDP to less than 10%. With coastal shipping being promoted as an energy efficient and lower-cost mode of transport, both for passengers and freight, through PPP mode with viability gap funding along with a focus on freight corridors on roads and track maintenance and doubling for railways, India will soon see a cost-efficient convergence on Logistics. It will be a huge boost to every business on land.
The multimodal solutions as a first mile to last mile connectivity, decreased lead times and costs, will ensure GDP growth and logistics efficiency of goods across the domestic periphery as well as exports. Strong focus and budget allocation to dedicated freight corridors will enable faster on-land transportation of goods to the ports of export, ensuring better delivery time and thus cheaper logistics cost factor. It will provide support for export efficiency that has been ensured through custom-duty tweaks.
Yogesh Dhingra, CEO & Founder, Smartr Logistics
We support the government’s vision to increase infrastructure development and the multiplier effect it has on productive capacity and creating growth and employment opportunities in the country. The 33% hike in capital investment includes provisions to construct new airports and expand railways as well as incentivising private investments in infrastructure. These will be effective in terms of ensuring better connectivity, increasing capacity, and better efficiency in the system, thereby reducing overall logistics costs.
The provision for the railways is the highest it has ever been. This is a welcome move to increase overall freight capacity and allow for more efficient connectivity options. Rail, being one of the most efficient modes of transportation, will help in cost reduction as well as in reducing greenhouse emissions by decreasing reliance on road and air connectivity.
The Budget highlights enhanced regional air connectivity through additional airports and heliports which is imperative for faster connectivity through direct flights for travel as well as cargo movement, thereby bridging the distance gap.
Through establishment of the Urban Infrastructure Development Fund (UIDF), the government emphasizes development in Tier 2 and 3 cities. We highly support this initiative as these cities have become major consumption centres, as well as producing manufacturing output in recent years with increased digitization. Hence, better infrastructure is increasingly critical to support these population centres.
We are pleased to see capital allocation highlighted for critical transport infrastructure projects for last and first-mile connectivity. Moreover, provisions towards the use of electric vehicles will help promote more sustainable operations. Additionally, the introduction of the Infrastructure Finance Secretariat will provide broader access to private funds and incentivise infrastructure development - benefitting all stakeholders within the manufacturing and logistics ecosystem.
This Budget meets our expectations, and we are confident that it will be conducive to robust growth and development, reducing overall costs, increasing productivity, and positively contributing to the economy.
Sudhanshu Pokhriyal, Chief Executive Officer, Bath & Tiles Hindware
The key priorities of the Union budget 2023 aims at the economic empowerment of women and job generation for the youth. We welcome the initiatives announced by the Hon’ble Finance Minister towards enhancing opportunities for infrastructure development. With an emphasis on the need for Indian ‘mega cities’ to transform into centres for economic growth, we feel there will be unique opportunities for members to come together and contribute to the growth of the country.
Abhishek Aggarwal, President-Strategy, Ozone Overseas and Secutech
We are extremely delighted with this Budget, especially since this is the first of ‘Amrit Kaal’ and envisions a technology-driven and knowledge-based economy. At Ozone Overseas, we are committed to this vision and believe in ramping up the virtuous cycle of investment and job creation. We are proud to say that all our products are ‘Made in India’, and our upcoming manufacturing facility is expected to generate employment. In the coming times, we will announce more such initiatives that will provide a solid impetus for growth and job creation, and help make India a global manufacturing hub.
Arun Misra, CEO, Hindustan Zinc
The green, growth-oriented Budget 2023 reflects resilience and a high probability of emerging as a USD 5 trillion economy, while keeping net zero and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) commitment at the core. The importance of green technology, green farming, green equipment, and allied green services in the Budget will propel India’s journey to become net zero by 2070. With the focus on “Green Growth” strategy, the demand for zinc as a metal of sustainability will rise, given its varied applications. Overall, this Budget can actualize vision of Lifestyle for Environment and take it to the masses, positioning India to inspire the world with a roadmap of how a large developing economy can be resource and carbon efficient.
With the rise in demand of galvanized steel in infrastructure projects for first and last-mile connectivity, demand for zinc is likely to rise as a consequence. India is on the verge of a clean energy shift which will propel demand of metal for achieving the sustainability vision.
Sanjay Mehta, President, MRAI
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced the Government of India vision and support towards a carbon-neutral economy has been appreciated by the recycling industry.
In a big boost for taxpayers and the economy, Sitharaman announced major changes in tax slabs under the new tax regime and a big hike in allocation for railways and capital expenditure will certainly enhance the demand for the recycling industry as a whole. It also reflects the strong commitment of the Union government to boost economic growth by investing in infrastructure development leading to an increase in capital expenditure by 37.4 per cent over the revised estimate (RE) 2022-23.
Material Recycling Association of India (MRAI) greatly appreciate the announcement to encourage the availability of raw materials for the steel sector by continuing the zero percent Basic Customs Duty (BCD) on secondary steel raw material of ferrous scrap, for the manufacture of CRGO Steel, and nickel cathode to achieve our green steel goal has been greatly appreciated.
In order to ensure the raw material security of scrap for secondary steel, the FM announcement in the 2023 budget to replace the old polluting vehicles is an important part of greening our economy. In persistence of the vehicle scrapping policy mentioned in Budget 2021-22, the FM allocated adequate funds to scrap old vehicles of the Central Government. The State Government will also be supported in replacing old vehicles and ambulances.
In addition to ferrous metals announcement, we also appreciate FM’s call for the concessional BCD of 2.5 per cent on copper scrap which has been continued to ensure the availability of raw materials for secondary copper producers who are mainly in the MSME sector.
We also appreciate government’s support to promote sustainability agenda to enhance EVs mobility, customs duty exemption has been extended to the import of capital goods and machinery required for manufacturing of lithium-ion cells batteries to boost domestic manufacturing, domestic value addition and green energy.