Budget 2024 Highlights: FDI Transformation, Fiscal Targets and Tax Reforms
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman introduced a new perspective to FDI, stating it now signifies 'First Develop India'. Sitharaman emphasized the encouragement of bilateral trade treaties to stimulate forthcoming FDIs. Notably, there are no plans to propose changes in tax rates, whether direct or indirect, according to Sitharaman's statement.
The projected fiscal deficit for FY24 stands at 5.8% of the GDP, with total expenditure revised to Rs 44.90 lakh crore. In the same fiscal year, total receipts, excluding borrowings, are estimated at Rs 27.56 lakh crore, while tax receipts alone are anticipated to reach Rs 23.24 lakh crore. Looking ahead to FY25, the fiscal deficit target is set at 5.1%, with a goal to further reduce it to below 4.5% by FY26.
To meet financial requirements in FY25, gross market borrowing is projected at Rs 14.13 lakh crore. The budget extends tax benefits for startups and investments made by sovereign wealth and pension funds, ensuring these incentives last until March 2025.
In a significant move benefiting taxpayers, Sitharaman announced the withdrawal of outstanding direct tax demands up to Rs 25,000 for the period up to the financial year 2009-10 and up to Rs10,000 for the financial years 2010-11 to 2014-15. This measure is expected to benefit around a crore taxpayers. Concluding her interim budget speech, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman summarized key fiscal points in just under an hour.