Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today announced a number of measures to boost the housing and export sector. This includes a
₹10,000 crore special window to extend funding to incomplete housing projects. The announcements come as the Indian economy is grappling with a sharp slowdown. In the most recent quarter, GDP growth slowed to a six-year low of 5%. Many sectors like auto and real estate are grappling with a sharp slowdown in demand. In recent weeks, the government has announced a slew of measures, including front-loading of public expenditure, and improved access to credit for businesses and capital infusion into state-run banks to boost credit.
The government had also eased foreign direct investment (FDI) rules in many sectors to get economic growth back on track.
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The Reserve Bank of India has cut projected GDP growth for this fiscal to 6.9%, while most analysts and financial institutions have estimated 6.5-7% growth.
Speaking on the state of the economy, the finance minister said revival signs are being seen in industrial production and fixed investment.
The finance minister said that inflation has been kept under 4%. And several NBFCs are benefiting from partial credit guarantee schemes announced earlier, she said.
Transmission of RBI repo rate cuts is being effected by banks, she said.
Here are the key announcements made by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today:
-Measures are being taken to improve credit outflows from banks
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-Transmission of interest rate cuts are being effected by banks
-Exports: Scheme for Remission of Duties or Taxes on Export Product (RoDTEP) will replace MEIS scheme
-Textile and other sectors that currently enjoy incentives up to 2% over MEIS will transit to RoDTEP from 1 Jan, 2020
-New export incentive scheme to replace Merchandise Exports from India Scheme
-Merchandise Exports from India Scheme or MEIS scheme to continue till 31 December
₹50,000 crore will go through new RoDTEP scheme or Revenue foregone projected at up to ₹50,000 crore
-Fully electronic refund scheme on input tax for exporters will be in place by end of this month
-This is expected to speed up input tax credit refunds for exporters
-The scope of Export Credit Insurance Scheme (ESIC) by ECGC will be expanded
-Revised Priority Sector Lending (PSL) norms for Export Credit - This will release an additional
₹36,000 crore to ₹68,000 crore as export credit under priority sector
-Export finance will be actively monitored by an inter-ministerial working group in Dept of Commerce, tracked through a dashboard
-Free Trade Agreements or FTA Utilisation Mission, headed by a senior officer in Dept of Commerce, to be set up
-Online "Original Managment System" for exporters will enable them to obtain Certificates of Origin will be launched in the next few weeks
-This is expected to improve ease of doing business for exporters
-There will be time-bound adoption by industry of all necessary mandatory technical standards
-Effective enforcement will elevate quality and performance, enhance competitiveness and address issue of sub-standard imports
-India to hold annual mega shopping festivals like Dubai Shopping Festival to boost exports
-Govt to cut turnaround time in ports, airports via use of technology
-Govt to enable handicrafts industry to effectively harness e-commerce for exports
₹10,000 crore window to extend funding to incomplete housing projects
₹10,000 crore to be contributed by Government and roughly same amount from outside investors
-The objective is to focus on construction of unfinished units
-The special window will provide funding to net-worth positive housing projects (non-NPA and non-NCLT projects) in affordable and middle-income category