Union Budget 2023, the most important financial event of the year, is around the corner. Speaking at the BT Market Today Summit on Tuesday, an expert opined that this year's Budget should be 'boring'. Pranjul Bhandari, Chief Economist, India, HSBC, said, "FM (Finance Minister) can keep the budget boring amid global tailwinds. It should be predictable and credible. The focus should be on macro stability, like low inflation, fiscal consolidation, lower fiscal deficit, rather than higher growth."
Samiran Chakraborty, Chief Economist, India, Citibank, suggested that the theme for Budget 2023 would be "investment, investment and investment". Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman would present the Budget on February 1.
On the economic front, HSBC's Bhandari expected the Indian economy to grow at 5.5 per cent next year. "Next year going to be turbulent, economic growth may soften. Global trade is slowing which would have an impact on exports as well," Bhandari stated.
Citibank's Chakraborty hinted at 6 per cent economic growth. Soumya Kanti Ghosh, Group Chief Economic Advisor, State Bank of India (SBI), hoped for "a little higher than 6 per cent growth". Crude oil rates would cool off in 2023 and inflation would come down, Ghosh added.
"Food prices have behaved remarkably well. The stage could be set for a positive GDP surprise next year," the SBI's Group Chief Economic Advisor said.
He also pointed out that credit growth has continued to expand, adding that private investment would take off in a meaningful manner.
On the situation in China, Citibank's Chakraborty said one must monitor the reopening trade and real estate sector to get an actual view.
To improve GST mop-up further, HSBC's Bhandari said continued reforms would be required, bringing in more items under the GST umbrella.
On the SME (Small and Mid-size Enterprise) front, Bhandari said, efforts should be put in place so that small firms can grow to become large companies. "PLI (Production Linked Incentive Scheme) subsidy is barely worth Rs 2 lakh crore, which is almost equal to our fertiliser subsidy. PLI scheme won't make India a global industrial hub. A lot more needs to be done," she stated.
Business Today is hosting its first-ever Market Summit in Mumbai at St Regis today. The one-day event would see market gurus decoding the trajectory of benchmark and sectoral indices and outlook for the current year.
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