Budget: mixed response of commercial and industrial organizations

PATNA: Commerce and industry agencies in the state gave a mix of reactions when the finance minister presented the Union budget on Saturday. While some commercial agencies praised the announcements in the agricultural sector and the changes in the income tax slabs, others expressed disappointment at the lower concentration in micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and cooperative industries.

PK Agarwal, president of the Bihar Chamber of Commerce and Industries (BCCI) said: We expect the budget to focus on the MSME sector and small-scale units, and allocate special packages to these sectors.

On the other hand, Abhishek Kumar, general secretary of the Bihar Business Association (BEA), praised the budgetary provisions related to the agricultural sector.

“With several benefits, including solar pumps and cold storage, granted to the agricultural sector, we can expect Bihar to grow economically in the coming years. In addition, the initiative to create portals for the much-discussed organic products will help increase employment in Bihar, he said.

The president of the Bihar Industries Association (BIA) oriented to growth said: The budget will have a positive overall impact in several sectors, especially in the agricultural sector. Given the long-term benefits, the budget would help poor and lower middle class people, who depend mainly on rural industries.

However, he expressed disappointment at not mentioning Bihar, which has been a pending lawsuit from BIA.

Real estate agents, on the other hand, welcomed the union budget. “We appreciate the budgetary provisions for the real estate sector. The term to take loans for affordable houses has been extended for one year. In addition, important government investments for infrastructure development, including roads, airports and water supply, have been announced. Simplification of the tax regime is also a big step, said Sachin Chandra, president of the Bihar chapter of the Builders Association of India (BAI).