How will budget affect your shopping list?

6 Jul

pranab-mukherjeePranab Mukherjee as Finance Minister presented the first budget of the new Congress government.The stock market tanked by almost 850 points as expectations were more than what was delivered in the 100 minute budget speech. However, the main concerns were addressed by the 73 year old minister –  stimulus on growth, focus on infrastructure development, simplicity in taxes, job creation and modernization of the police and army.

There was expectation that there will be sweeping reforms this time with no Left problem. Disinvestment was one issue that was expected to be a main issue of the budget but it was just touched upon.

Budgets has always attracted huge debates in the political arena, corporate sector and among the general public. As the experts point out, this budget has the promise to be a fantastic budget for the common man. Instead of earlier attempts at spoon-fooding to uplift the masses, this budget aims at creating the right environment with huge impetus on job creation, rural reconstruction, food security, irrigation boost, extension of waiver of farmer loans and above all increase in income tax exemption.

The Finance Minister also said the unique identification plan, approved by the previous UPA Government will be operational in 12-18 months and the process begin to hand over biometric smart cards to 1.17 billion citizens.

The veteran minister who had presented his last full Budget as Finance Minister in the Indira Gandhi government 25 years ago, said the new United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government would continue to push its agenda of ensuring “inclusive growth and equitable development” while also meeting the “rising expectations of a young India”.

So, what is in store for the working young Indian out on a shopping spree?

Prices down?

LCD TV – Pranab Mukherjee announced reduction in the basic customs duty on LCD panels from 10 per cent to 5 per cent to support indigenous production of LCD televisions. Good, that I waited to buy mine.

Mobile Phones – There will be full exemption of 4 percent from special Countervailing Duties (CVDs) on parts for manufacture of mobile phones and accessories to be extended for one more year.

Big cars – Go, buy your dream SUV now! Cars with engine capacities of 2,000cc and above will become cheaper after the government announced it was reducing additional excise duty on the vehicles by Rs 5,000 per unit.

Branded Jewellery – Girls will be happy. No excise duty on branded jewellery.

Packaged Software – On packaged or canned software, CVD exemption to be provided on the portion of the value which represents the consideration for transfer of the right to use such software, subject to specified conditions.

Life Saving Drugs – Customs duty on 10 specified life saving drugs/vaccine and their bulk drugs to be reduced from 10% to 5% with Nil CVD (by way of excise duty exemption).

Green-energy products – Customs duty on bio-diesel to be reduced from 7.5% to 2.5%. Duty paid High Speed Diesel blended with upto 20% bio-diesel to be fully exempted from excise duties.

Prices up?

Gold Bars and Silver – Gold bars and gold coins would now attract Rs 200 per 10 gram from earlier Rs 100 while on silver, the custom duty has been increased to Rs 1,000 a kg from Rs 500.

Set-top Boxes – There will be a 5% custom duty on set-top boxes for direct to home television.

Branded Footwear – Excise duty hike on Footwear of RSP exceeding Rs.750 per pair

Cosmetic Surgery

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