Budget 2023: Strong outlook and hope for flat GST rate on online gifting industry

Budget 2023

The Budget 2023 Session of Parliament will commence on January 31 and end on April 6. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Union Budget for 2023-24 at 11 am on Wednesday, the 1st February, 2023.

Ahead of the Budget, India’s gifting industry on January 17 (Tuesday) urged the government to aid the growth of the industry. Pawan Gadia, CEO Global FNP (Ferns N Petals) noted that the Gifting industry is expected to grow faster in the coming months as disposable incomes grow, people migrate for jobs, and occasions multiply.

“To aid the growth of the industry, government can create policies to increase disposable income of the consumer. An increase in the income tax exemption slabs on individual taxes will allow the consumer to have more money in hand to spend on gifts for their loved ones,” Pawan Gadia from FNP added. 

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The gifting industry in the country is expected to touch USD 84 billion by 2024, according to an earlier report by leading gift cards provider Qwikcilver. In fact, the market is growing in the country exponentially. 

Corporate gifting enjoys a lion’s share of the market, accounting for more than 80 per cent of all gifting items, with consumer gifting contributing 20 per cent. The global gifting market is estimated to be USD 475 billion and India is expected to be one of the strongest contributors by 2024.

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Budget expectations 

Pawan Gadia said, since FNP is also one of the largest cake bakers in the country, we are hoping for some reduction in the GST of bakery products and other edibles to 5% from current 18%.

Considering the phenomenal demands of cakes as a gifting category we have plans to grow FNP Cakes to over 250 stores by end 2023. As one of largest gifting corporates in India we are taking care of the emotions of the people which increases the happiness index of the country as a whole. So a separate tax rate or a flat GST rate of 5% on the online gifting industry would be very welcome”

Read Also: Budget 2023: Change in taxation of vacant property as let out

Budget 2023-24

Parliament’s Budget Session will begin from January 31 with President Droupadi Murmu’s address to the joint sitting of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. The Session will have 27 sittings and will continue till April 6 with a month-long recess to examine the budget papers. 

The first part of the Budget Session will conclude on February 14. Parliament will reconvene on March 12 for the second part of the Budget Session.

Budget 2023-24 to be more rural and infra-focused

The forthcoming budget — the last full budget of the present government ahead of the general elections to be held in mid-2024 — will be more rural- and infra-focused, said a foreign brokerage.

The upcoming budget is likely to boost rural/agri spending by $10 billion — a growth of 15 per cent over FY23 — and maintain double-digit 20 per cent growth in public capex over the current fiscal, given that the nation will be going to the polls in mid-2024, UBS India economist Tanvee Gupta Jain said.

However, she noted that the government is unlikely to go beyond fiscal boundaries with its election-oriented budget and also expects the subsidy burden to ease significantly in FY24, creating more fiscal space to reallocate money towards existing rural schemes, including the rural jobs scheme MGNREGA, rural housing and roads, amongst others.

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