Union Budget 2013-2014

The Union Budget for 2013-14 aims at 'higher growth leading to inclusive and sustainable development.' With this as mool mantra, the Union Finance Minister Shri P Chidambaram has sought to increase allocation to key areas and provide incentives for investments and savings while containing the fiscal deficit to 4.8% of GDP. Presenting the Union Budget in Parliament on February 28, the Finance Minister expressed the hope that the India would achieve high economic growth despite slowdown in the global economic growth. Here are the Key Features of the Union Budget 2013-2014.

The Economy and The Challenges
The Economy and The Challenges

Getting back to potential growth rate of 8 percent is the challenge the country is facing.

Slowdown in Indian economy has to be seen in the context of slowing global economic growth from 3.9 percent in 2011 to 3.2 percent in 2012.

However, no reason for gloom or pessimism.Of the large countries of the world only China and Indonesia growing faster than India in 2012-13. In 2013-14, only China projected to grow faster than India.

Between 2004 and 2008, and again in 2009-10 and 2010-11 the growth rate was over 8 percent and crossed 9 percent in four of those six years.

11th Plan period had average growth rate of 8 percent, highest during any Plan period.

High growth rate can again be achieved through cooperation.

'Higher growth leading to inclusive and sustainable development' to be the mool mantra.

Government believes in inclusive development with emphasis on improving human development indicators specially of women, the scheduled castes, the scheduled tribes, the minorities and some backward classes. This Budget to be a testimony to that commitment.

Budget Estimates

  • Plan expenditure is placed at Rs.5,55,322crore.
  • Non Plan Expenditure is estimated at Rs.11,09,975crore.
  • Fiscal deficit for the current year contained at 5.2 percent and for the year 2013-14 at 4.8 percent.
  • Revenue deficit for the current year at 3.9 percent and for the year 2013-14 at 3.3percent.
  • By 2016-17 fiscal deficit to be brought down to 3 percent, revenue deficit to 1.5percent and effective revenue deficit to zero percent.

The Plan and Budgetary allocations
The Plan and Budgetary allocations

Revised Estimates (RE) of the expenditure in 2012-13 at 96 percent of the Budget Estimates (BE) due to slowdown and austerity measures.

During 2013-14, BE of total expenditure of 16,65,297crore and of Plan Expenditure at 5,55,322 crore.

Plan Expenditure in 2013-14 to grow at 29.4 percent over Revised Estimates for the current year.

All flagship programmes fully and adequately funded and sufficient funds provided to each Ministry or Department consistent with their capacity to spend funds.

Budget for 2013-14 to have one overarching goal of creating opportunities for our youth to acquire education and skills that will get them decent jobs or self-employment.

  •  SC, ST, Women and Children
  •  Minorities
  •  Disabled Persons
  •  Health and Education
  •  ICDS
  •  Drinking Water
  •  Rural Development
  •  JNNURM
  •  Agriculture
  •  Agricultural Credit
  •  Green Revolution
  •  Farmer Producer Organizations
  •  Food Security

Investment, Infrastructure and Industry

Communication with investors to be improved to remove any apprehension or distrust, including fears about undue regulatory burden.

Need of new and innovative instruments to mobilise funds for investment in infrastructure sector. Measures such as:

Infrastructure Debt Funds (IDF) to be encouraged,

IIFCL to offer credit enhancement.

Infrastructure tax-free bond of Rs.50,000 crore in 2013-14,

Build roads in North eastern states and connect them to Myanmar with assistance from WB & ADB,

Raising corpus of Rural Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) to Rs.20,000crore andRs.5,000 crore to NABARD to finance construction for warehousing.

Window to Panchayats to finance construction of godowns.

  •  Road Construction
  •  Cabinet Committee on Investment
  •  New Investment
  •  Savings
  •  Industrial Corridors
  •  Ports
  •  National Waterways
  •  Oil and Gas
  •  Coal
  •  Power
  •  Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises
  •  Textiles
  •  Foreign Trade

Financial Sector
Financial Sector

A standing Council of Experts to be constituted in the Ministry of Finance to analyse the international competitiveness of the Indian financial sector.

  •  Banking
  •  Insurance
  •  Capital Market

Environment

  • Support to municipalities that will implement waste-to-energy projects.
  • Government to provide low interest bearing fund from the National Clean Energy Fund (NCEF) to IREDA to on-lend to viable renewable energy projects.
  • 'Generation-based incentive' reintroduced for wind energy projects and Rs.800 crore allocated for this purpose.

Other Proposals

  •  Backward Regions Grant Fund
  •  Skill Development
  •  Defence
  •  Science and Technology
  •  Sports
  •  Broadcasting
  •  Panchayati Raj
  •  Post Offices
  •  Ghadar Memorial
  •  Central Schemes

Three Promises
Three Promises
  • Promises made to woman, youth and poor.
  • We stand in solidarity with our girl children and women. And we pledge to do everything possible to empower them and to keep them safe and secure. A fund - "Nirbhaya Fund" - to be setup with Government contribution of Rs.1,000 crore.
  • Youth to be motivated to voluntarily join skill development programmes.
  • National Skill Development Corporation to set the curriculum and standards for training in different skills. Rs.1000 crore set apart for this scheme.
  • To the poor of India direct benefit transfer scheme will be rolled out throughout the country during the term of the UPA Government with the motive "Aapka paisa aapke haath".

Tax Proposals

Clarity in tax laws, a stable tax regime, a non-adversarial tax administration, a fair mechanism for dispute resolution and independent judiciary for greater assurance is underlying theme of tax proposals.

Tax Administration Reforms Commission to be set up.

In short term need to reclaim peak of 11.9 percent of tax GDP ratio achieved in 2007-08.

  •  Direct Taxes
  •  Indirect Taxes
  •  Customs
  •  Excise duty
  •  Service Tax
  •  Good and Services Tax