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(13 February 2023) Government Data Roundup: Union Budget, Economic Survey, NITI Aayog Reports on ITIs & ULBs Among The Data/Reports Released Recently


The 22nd edition of the fortnightly government roundup covers the union budget 2023-24, economic survey 2022-23, reports, consultation papers released NITI Aayog and TRAI.

In this 22nd edition of Factly’s Fortnightly Government Data Roundup, we look at the key reports released in the fortnight from 27 January to 9 February 2023. These include the Union Budget 2023-24 and Economic Survey for 2022-23, reports released by NITI Aayog, and a Consultation Paper released by TRAI.

Union Budget 2023-24

Report nameUnion Budget 2023-24
Agency responsibleMinistry of Finance
Frequency of releaseAnnual
Source LinkUnion Budget 2023-24

Brief about the report

Article 112 of the Constitution of India states that a statement of estimated receipts and expenditure of the Government of India for a financial year needs to be laid before both the houses of the Parliament. The legislation refers to the Union Budget as ‘Annual Financial Statement’. Before the beginning of the next financial year (01 April), the budget is required to be passed by the parliament. Thus, every year, the parliament session in the month of February is dedicated to the annual Union Budget and is thus called the budget session. A detailed explainer by Factly on the process behind the preparation of Union Budget can be accessed here.

In the ongoing budget session of the parliament, the finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the Union Budget for 2023-24. This would be the NDA Government’s last full budget before the 2024 elections.

Key takeaways from the Union Budget 2023-24

While announcing the Budget, the finance minister emphasized that Indian economy is on the right track, and despite a time of challenges, heading towards a bright future. She listed seven priorities of the Union Budget and that complement each other and act as the ‘Saptarishi’ guiding the nation through the Amrit Kaal. They are Inclusive Development, Reaching the Last Mile, Infrastructure and Investment, Unleashing the Potential, Green Growth, Youth Power, and Financial Sector.

Some of the key achievements of the government as mentioned in the annual budget are listed below.

  • Per capita income has more than doubled to Rs. 1.97 lakh in around nine years.
  • Indian economy’s size has increased from being 10th to 5th largest in the world in the past nine years.
  • EPFO membership has more than doubled to 27 crores.
  • 11.7 crore household toilets constructed under Swachh Bharat Mission & 9.6 crore LPG connections provided under Ujjwala scheme.
  • 220 crore COVID-19 vaccination doses were given to 102 crore persons.

Atmanirbhar Clean Plant Program, Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana 4.0, Agriculture Accelerator Fund, Digital public infrastructure for agriculture, Sickle Cell Anaemia elimination mission, and PM Programme for Restoration, Awareness, Nourishment and Amelioration of Mother Earth (PM-PRANAM) are some of the initiatives planned to be launched.

Some amendments with respect to direct taxes are given below.

  • Rebate limit of personal Income Tax to be increased to Rs. 7 lakhs from the current Rs. 5 lakhs in the new tax regime. Persons in the new tax regime, with income up to Rs. 7 lakhs need not pay any tax. Number of tax labs will be reduced to five and the tax exemption limit will be increased to Rs. 3 lakhs in the new regime.  
              Tax SlabsTax Rates
3 to 6 lakhs5%
6 to 9 lakhs10%
9 to 12 lakhs15%
12 to 15 lakhs20%
>15 lakhs30%
  • Highest surcharge rate to be reduced from 37% to 25% in the new tax regime. This will further reduce the maximum personal income tax rate to 39%. The new income tax regime will be made the default tax regime from 01 April 2023.
  • The limit for tax exemption on leave encashment on retirement of non-government salaried employees will increase to Rs. 25 lakhs.
  • A higher limit of Rs. 3 crores for TDS on cash withdrawal for co-operative societies has been proposed.

With respect to indirect taxes, proposed amendments have been listed below.

  • Reduction in customs duty on parts of open cells of TV panels, heat coil for manufacture of electric kitchen, certain inputs for mobile phone manufacturing, seeds used in manufacturing of lab-grown diamonds, and shrimp feed has been proposed.
  • Customs duty on articles made from dore and bars of gold and platinum, silver dore, bars and articles, kitchen electric chimney, and compounded rubber will be increased.
  • Taxes on cigarettes will be increased by 16%

Legislative changes in Customs Act, Customs Tariff Act, and CGST Act have been proposed too.

Economic Survey 2022-23

Report nameEconomic Survey 2022-23
Agency responsibleMinistry of Finance
Frequency of releaseAnnual
Source LinkEconomic Survey 2022-23

Brief about the report

Published annually by the Ministry of Finance, the Economic Survey is a report that reviews the performance of the Indian economy in the last financial year. It is usually presented by the finance minister in the Parliament a day ahead of the Union Budget. This year’s Economic Survey is significant as it captures the impact of the Russia-Ukraine war that started while the pandemic started receding, as well as India’s recovery following the pandemic.

Key Highlights

  • India is to witness GDP growth of 6.0 – 6.8% in 2023-24, depending on the trajectory of economic and political developments globally
  • Despite the three shocks of COVID-19, Russian-Ukraine conflict and the Central Banks across economies led by Federal Reserve responding with synchronised policy rate hikes to curb inflation, leading to appreciation of US Dollar and the widening of the Current Account Deficits (CAD) in net importing economies, agencies worldwide continue to project India as the fastest-growing major economy at 6.5 – 7% in 2023.
  • The credit growth to the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector has been remarkably high, over 30.6%, on average during January to November 2022.
  • RBI has projected headline inflation at 6% in 2022-23, which is outside its target range. At the same time, it is not high enough to deter private consumption and not so low as to weaken the inducement to invest.
  • Central and State Government’s budgeted expenditure on health sector touched 2.1% of GDP in 2022-23 (BE) and 2.2% in 2021-22 (RE) against 1.6% in 2020-21.
  • Social sector expenditure increased to Rs. 21.3 lakh crore in 2022-23 (BE) from Rs. 9.1 lakh crore in 2015-16.
  • The services sector is expected to grow at 9.1% in 2022-23, as against 8.4% (YoY) in 2021-22.

Consultation paper on ‘Regulating Converged Digital Technologies and Services –Enabling Convergence of Carriage of Broadcasting and Telecommunication’

Report nameRegulating Converged Digital Technologies and Services –Enabling Convergence of Carriage of Broadcasting and Telecommunication services
Agency responsibleTelecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)
Frequency of release
Source LinkRegulating Converged Digital Technologies and Services –Enabling Convergence of Carriage of Broadcasting and Telecommunication services

Brief about the report

Over the years, technological advancements have resulted in the convergence of devices, services, and networks. Factors such as efficient utilization of resources, increased level of competition, more innovative user applications and technological developments are driving convergence, which has been beneficial to various stakeholders. Technological convergence not only enables possibility of delivering a broader set of products, but also benefits through lower entry barriers, promotion of competition, lower cost equipment, quicker market response, and new business opportunities. However, there are challenges too.

The paper deals with the issue of regulating converged digital technologies upon enabling convergence of carriage of broadcasting and telecommunication services and seeks views of the stakeholders on changes required, if any, in legal, administrative, and licensing framework to deal with them. It has flagged issues like standards and technical license conditions from a policy perspective.

The last date for submission of comments is 27 February 2023 and for counter comments is 13 March 2023. The Comments and counter-comments may be sent to advbbpa@trai.gov.in.

Transition to accrual accounting: Models and learnings for Urban Local Bodies

Report nameTransition to accrual accounting: Models and learnings for Urban Local Bodies
Agency responsible
Frequency of release
Source LinkTransition to accrual accounting: Models and learnings for Urban Local Bodies

About the report

The Indian Government comes up with initiatives to improve the financial reporting in Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) which include linking grants with accounting reforms among other things. Recently, the 15th Finance Commission recommended the online availability of unaudited annual accounts of the previous year and audited accounts for the year before previous year as an entry-level condition (amongst other conditions) to avail grant. In this context, the Committee on Public & Government Financial Management (CP&GFM) of ‘The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India’ (ICAI) along with ICAI Accounting Research Foundation and NITI Aayog undertook this research study.

The study looks at the reforms in Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Karnataka, Odisha, Rajasthan, and Tamil Nadu apart from Cantonment Boards. The status of the reforms and a comparison of the implementation of the same across the said states has been presented in the study.

Key highlights from the report

  • Except Karnataka (other than Bengaluru), Tamil Nadu, and 62 Cantonment boards, in all other study States, the complete transition to accrual accounting in ULBs is yet to happen.
  • Two main roadblocks to internalize accrual accounting were the severe lack of qualified and trained accountants in the Accounts department at ULB level, and lack of integration between financial statements audit and statutory audit.
  • Some of the key recommendations include State-wide implementation of reforms, involvement of State Urban Development Department, Municipal Administration Directorates, and Finance Department, using incentives and disincentives to encourage implementation among others.

Transforming Industrial Training Institutes

Report nameTransforming Industrial Training Institutes
SectorSkill Development
Agency responsibleNITI Aayog
Frequency of release
Source LinkTransforming Industrial Training Institutes

About the report

The report by NITI Aayog highlights transformative ideas for revamping the Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) ecosystem in the country. ITIs are vital for vocational training in India. Every year, lakhs of students enter the nearly 15,000 odd ITIs and many of them join the trained workforce of the country. Numerous initiatives have been taken by the government to revamp the same. However, underutilization, low quality in training and faculty, and poor infrastructure continue to affect the employability of the students.

Key Highlights

The study presents a comprehensive set of recommendations to transform ITIs, through a seven-pronged approach pertaining to changes in administration, curriculum, financing, reporting, monitoring, resource mobilization, and student support services.

Some of the recommendations put forth in the report are the following.

  • Setting up a separate board for vocational education for better credibility and recognition and a centralized admission process.
  • A Centrally sponsored scheme with Centre and State partnership may be institutionalized for uplifting poor performing ITIs.
  • Collaboration of ITIs with MSMEs for training and apprenticeship.
  • The ITIs should keep track of micro & macro-economic trends to stay abreast with the sectors of employment opportunities.
  • Strict monitoring and data management systems should be in place to keep the NCVT MIS Dashboard updated.
  • Counselling facilities for students and special provisions to encourage women should be made available by ITIs.

About Author

A bachelor’s degree in mathematics and master’s in social science, she is driven by ardent desire to work with this unique combination to create her own path instead of following the herd. Having served a stint as the college union chairperson, she is a strategist who is also passionate about nature conservation, art and loves solving Sudoku.

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