Union finance minister Piyush Goyal presented the Interim Budget for 2019 today. Here are some reactions from industry leaders in renewable energy, electric vehicles, IoT, etc.
“We welcome the budget. It is a people-focused budget. Our honourable standing finance minister Piyush Goyal announced the series of measures in Budget 2019 – 20 to promote AI and infrastructure, and we as a company are looking forward to its future scope.
iRAM would be standing with Mr. Goyal’s initiative to build next-gen infrastructure physical as well as social for a $10 trillion economy and to provide Ease of Living. This will also mean opportunities for the smart city venture and companies like iRAM. We will be working closely with the government to make basic facility available like smart parking solutions, smart lighting solutions, infrastructure etc.
Also, the announcement to build a Digital India that reaches every citizen by creating innumerable start-ups and jobs, will give a major impetus to the smart city initiative. National centre for artificial intelligence is under consideration. Along with that a national AI portal will be developed soon, and this is a very welcome step for IoT enabled companies like iRAM.”
—Udaya Bhaskar Rao Abburu, CEO & Managing Director, iRam Technologies
“The Union Budget 2019 has a strong focus on long term sustainable growth. An effort has been made to bridge the urban-rural divide. Fiscal prudence has been maintained by the government even though we are in lead-up to elections. Vision 2030 elaborates the government’s focus on key sectors, that should help India transform into a global power – physical infrastructure, clean & green India, rural industrialization are some of the key work areas. Boost to manufacturing sector, will help transform the ‘Make in India’ vision into a reality, leading to significant increase in job opportunities.
It is good to see government’s continuing push for renewables to become a major source of energy in India. This will help ensure India’s energy security as well as meet our climate change goals. Through continued support for renewables, EVs will benefit. India might set a precedent in EVs being powered predominantly by renewable energy, as compared to coal based thermal power.
I see a holistic and inclusive approach taken by the government.”
—Vineet Mittal, Chairman, Avaada Group
“In a situation where there is scarcity of financing options for renewables and manufacturing units are dying a slow death, the budget provides no ray of hope.
The industry was expecting a policy direction from the government to promote manufacturing, especially in the renewable energy sector in the background of job crisis, which India is facing right now. Surprisingly, this was completely missing from the budget.
Budgetary allocation for the MNRE remains approximately the similar to capital allocated in FY 2017-18, standing at INR 5200 crore. Unfortunately, the Government did not act upon the Parliamentary Standing Committee recommendation, which reinstatement the funding of renewable energy projects through National Clean Energy Fund (NCEF), which was diverted towards GST compensation fund since 2017.”
—Amit Gupta, Director of Legal & Corporate Affairs, Vikram Solar
It is good to see that renewable energy remains a priority for the Government and has been prominently highlighted in India’s 2030 Vision. Electric Vehicles have also been brought into focus. What we will wait to see is, finer print on the renewable industry like uniformity in policies, imposition of duties, ease of financing etc. to reduce dependence on deplete-able energy resources, thereby fueling adoption of renewable energy. For Electric Vehicles to be a norm of the future, policies should include how EVs can be powered by renewable energy. While the budget has confirmed the role of renewables in its vision of a clean and green India, and states have started showing enthusiasm in adoption, a long term road map will be expected by the industry.
“We are elated at Renewable Energy being a key dimension in the Government’s vision for the coming decade, as proposed in the Interim Budget, with specific focus on Electric Vehicles and Energy storage solutions.
With the focus on supporting domestic trade and services, and Public Sector Undertakings now sourcing from local entities, we foresee an impetus towards growth for domestic manufacturers in the sector, while achieving economies of scale and supporting job creation..
Moreover, we see solar energy being an integral support pillar to The Pradhan Mantri Saubhagya Yojna, which aims at making electricity accessible to all. We applaud the Government’s 2030 vision of reduced dependencies on foreign entities for fossil fuel and believe that given a sustainable ecosystem for domestic solar manufacturers, solar energy will be a prime source of energy. This in-turn, will reduce imports, thus strengthening the Rupee denomination and contributing to the nation’s GDP.”
—Sunil Rathi, Director, Waaree Energies
“In line with the vision to make India pollution free, the Government of India has once again shown its commitment to encourage and implement electric vehicles and clean fuel energy. Announcements of tax rebates on the import of EV technology, including batteries and motors ranging from 10 to 25 percent, and incentives for local battery manufacturing will speed up the EV revolution. We are happy to see the continuing support of the GoI in realizing India’s EV dream. We urge the Government to take swift action in launching the National Energy Storage Mission in order to support the development of an R&D and manufacturing ecosystem for energy storage and EVs.”
—Rahul Walawalkar, President, India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA)
“The interim budget is pro-growth and provides a massive boost to propel domestic consumption through a) Income Tax sops for nearly 30 million income taxpayers b) Improved financial health of 120 million marginal farmers. The budget also gave a boost to ‘Make In India’ by focusing on manufacturing and enhancing infrastructure and rural connectivity. It is aligned to the objective of overall economic growth, Nation building and job creation. This budget, takes into account various stakeholders across the spectrum, right from the agriculture sector, social sector, industry, young India and the senior citizens.
The RE industry welcomes the government’s focus on clean energy being the major source of energy security for the country. Prime Minister’s mission of bringing an Electric Vehicle revolution to India by 2030, where renewable energy will be used to power EVs to tackle the issue of climate change is a great initiative and will boost the clean energy market. Also, we hope that with the capital infused in the banking sector and banks coming out of PCA will help in infusing more funds to renewable energy projects.”
—Tulsi Tanti, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director, Suzlon Group
“It is heartening to see the budget clearly outline the priority areas as part of the broad vision for the future, with sustainable use of energy at the core of that plan. The focus on renewables is evident with electric vehicles being one of the ten dimensions for building New India by 2030. The budget announcement that India will drive on electric vehicles with renewables, backed by energy storage devices, becoming a major source of power supply shows that this is expected to be a key focus area for future governments. If concerted steps are taken in this direction, it will be go a long way in bringing down pollution levels addressing the issue of climate change.
The long term focus on creating a fully digital economy with one lakh digital villages in next five years and expanding rural industrialisation by harnessing digital technologies is also laudable. This is combined with a reiteration of Make in India which can support the evolution to the smarter, Industry 4.0 A combination of all these measures, when undertaken, will put India firmly on road to become a $10 trillion economy in next eight years. Further, the government’s decision to set up National Centre on Artificial Intelligence will allow sectors across the economy to draw benefits from this new age technology, boost manufacturing, trim production losses and usher in efficiency.“
—Anil Chaudhry, Zone President and Managing Director, Schneider Electric India
“Finance Minister Piyush Goyal emphasized on the importance of making India a pollution free nation, stating that a green and clean India is the third Dimension of the Government’s vision. He mentioned that India will drive on Electric Vehicles with Renewables becoming a major source of energy supply. Global Infrastructure / Power experts like us applaud the importance laid on renewable energy and energy storage devices through Electric Vehicles. This vision will reduce import-dependence and ensure energy security for the people of our country.
The government’s efforts to increase installed solar generation capacity is commendable, with the growth rate increasing 10 times in the last five years. The setting up of the International Solar Alliance is a great step to address the problem of climate change. We are happy to participate in the government’s endeavor to solve the problem of climate change.
We are happy to hear that the Government is in the process of implementing the various recommendations made by the Inter- Ministerial Committee towards reducing the import dependence on crude oil and natural gas. Urgent attention has to be directed towards transforming the system of bidding for exploration and changing from revenue sharing to the exploration programme for Category II and III basins. The steps taken by the Government are in positive light and will be important for the natural gas sector.”
—Rajiv Menon, Managing Director, Black & Veatch India