Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will present the Union Budget for this year in about an hour from now, marking the first budget of the new NDA government. Jaitley is likely to announce tax incentives for the industry to boost demand and manufacturing in the country. The finance minister has already extended the excise duty reduction in consumer durables till December 31 from June 30.
However, what would be interesting to see is whether Jaitley would make any announcements that would give impetus to manufacturing of electronics including mobile phones in India. The recent Nokia manufacturing plant case has impacted investor confidence and Jaitley could make announcements offering sops to companies to reconsider India as manufacturing hub.
In order to push local manufacturing, Jaitley could also marginally increase import duties for electronics. This would increase the price of electronic consumer durables like mobile phones that are not manufactured in India, which currently attract 4 percent import duty.
We will get to know more when Jaitley presents his budget. Stay tuned.