A disinvestment target of Rs 40,000 crore for 2011-12, bank licenses to new private sector players and speeding up of various pending financial sector bills were some of the highlights of Budget proposals presented by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Monday.
Here are some major announcements made by Mukherjee in his Budget speech in the Parliament:
*Disinvestment target for the next fiscal at Rs 40,000 crore. Proceeds for this fiscal at Rs 22,144 crore.
*RBI's final guidelines for new bank licences to private players by March-end; Bill to amendments in current session.
*Financial sector reforms to move forward.
*Bills on Insurance amendment,LIC and Pension Development Authority, Banking Laws amendment, SBI subsidiaries and BIFR in the current session.
*Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission, to be headed by former Supreme Court judge B Srikrishna, to complete its work in 24 months.
*THe Commission to overhaul financial sector regulations.
*New Companies Bill to be introduced in current session.
*Discussions on to further liberalise FDI policy.
*Govt to move towards direct transfer of cash subsidy as regards kerosene, LPG and fertilisers.
*Constitution Amendment Bill for introduction of GST in this session.
*Goods and Services Tax Bill this year.
*Direct Taxes Code Bill likely to be passed by Parliament next financial year after getting Standing Committee report.
*Public Debt Management Agency Bill in the next fiscal.
*Indian mutual funds to get direct access to foreign markets; FIIs to be allowed to invest in MFs.
*Investment limit for FIIs in corporate bonds to be raised.
*Government to put in place a framework for safeguard of small borrowers in the micro finance sector.
*Current account deficit and average inflation in 2011-12 likely to be less than current year.
*Total food inflation down from 20.2 per cent last year to 9.3 per cent in Jan; still a matter of concern.
*RBI steps to help further moderate inflation in coming months; high current account deficit also poses some concern.
*Economy estimated to have grown a 8.6 per cent in 2010-11; Growth expected at 9 per cent in next fiscal.
*Corruption identified as a problem that needs to be fought collectively.
*FM says he sees Budget 2011-12 as transition towards more transparent and result-oriented economic management.