(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Muscat- Indian Embassy hall recently witnessed an auspicious gathering from business and finance background audience seriously attending a seminar conducted by Modern Exchange. The seminar was on the recent financial budget of India for the fiscal year 2018-19 discussing its various aspects and the impact on the Indians, especially on the expatriate community and common public at large.
The seminar was inaugurated by H E Indra Mani Pandey, Indian Ambassador to Oman, explaining the financial policies of the government of India and its far reaching effects.
'Government's financial policies are consistent towards the development of our country. The economy is growing and international bodies have admired the demonetisation and GST (goods and service tax) implemented by the government. This is the best time for non-resident Indians to invest in the country,' H E Pandey said.
'Indian expat community in Oman should collaborate with Omani business people to encourage them to invest in India.' HDFC Bank senior economist Tushar Arora delivered the first keynote address.
'There are hopes and concerns in budget. Demonetisation and GST have adversely affected the country, but this phenomena is a short-term impact. There will be positive far-reaching effects for both these fiscal polices. Both these policy changes were the reasons behind economic growth fallen down from 7.5 per cent to 6.5 per cent, though 6.5 is not that negative indicator,' Araora said.
'The Inflation rate target is 4 per cent with a possibility of plus or minus 2 per cent. And the expected inflation for FY19 is around 5 per cent, which comes under our prediction. High inflation rates could pose upside risks for interest rates and this could benefit some investors to ensure higher return on investment. The exchange rate will go down as the current account deficit worsens and the fair value deteriorates on account of rising inflation in the economy. This may result in increased NRI investments and transfers to India. The fiscal deficit remains a concern. Exports from is improving, but comparatively lesser than other emerging markets.'
Tax expert, Kirit N Mehta gave the second keynote speech.
'There are 1.4mn registered companies in India. But 0.6mn only pays tax regularly. Among Individuals, while 19mn salaried employees pay tax at R76,000 each, the 19mn businessmen pay R26,000 only. Also the Income by way of capital gains has been tax free or taxed at nominal rate leading to low tax collections. This is a big challenge India faces and the prime reason behind deficit budgets. The government needs to widen the tax base to raise resources for development. Actually, citizens who pay taxes are actively participating in the economic development of the country.
'The US levies income and capital gains taxes at a much higher rate and further levies gift and inheritance tax as well. India is therefore one of the low tax nations. The efficient tax administration shall help reduce budget deficit.'
It is a truth that farmers do suffer from not getting sufficient value for their products.
The government is concentrating on this and spending more on rural growth, especially for developing infrastructure and creating logistics to help farmers obtain higher prices for agricultural products. This shall help reduce the wastage of farm products and maintain its quality.
Simultaneously, if the role of the middlemen is curtailed, the efficient transfer from the
farmers to consumers shall increase the income of farmers and bring about economic growth, less pressure on Agri prices, inflation, budget deficit and interest rates.
Modern exchange general manager, Philip Koshy welcomed the gathering and conveyed vote of thanks. Modern exchange has been catering to the money transfer need of expats in Oman for many years.