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Tags: India | Economy

India's Budget Offers Tax Relief amid Slow Economic Growth

India's Budget Offers Tax Relief amid Slow Economic Growth

Saturday, 01 February 2020 04:38 AM

NEW DELHI (AP) — India’s government on Saturday offered relief to taxpayers and vowed to spend billions to double farmers’ incomes and upgrade infrastructure, health care and industry to boost the country's lowest economic growth in a decade.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented to Parliament the budget for fiscal year 2020-21 that starts April 1, saying the government plans to spend $39.8 billion for agriculture and allied activities, $9.9 billion for health, $3.9 billion for industry and commerce, and $628.6 million to combat worsening air pollution in the country.

Income tax will be lowered by 5-10% for people earning above 500,000 rupees ($7,140) a year. Those those earning less than 500,000 rupees will pay no tax, up from 250,000 rupees currently, she said.

India is facing its worst economic slowdown in a decade, with economic growth this year slipping to 5%.

The government projects the economy will grow by up to 6.5% in the next fiscal year and hopes to follow China's example in developing labor-intensive industries and exports.

The upbeat assessment is at odds with the International Monetary Fund's decision earlier this month to downgrade its estimate for the country's 2019-20 economic growth to 4.8% from the 6.1% expansion it projected in October. The IMF cited a sharper-than-expected slowdown in local demand and stresses in the non-bank financial sector.

Many economists believe Prime Minister Narendra Modi's signature economic policies are at least partly to blame for the slowdown. A surprise demonetization in 2016 and the hasty roll out of a goods and services tax were blows to manufacturing, especially the auto industry.

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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India's government on Saturday offered relief to taxpayers and vowed to spend billions to double farmers' incomes and upgrade infrastructure, health care and industry to boost the country's lowest economic growth in a decade.Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented to...
India,Economy
262
2020-38-01
Saturday, 01 February 2020 04:38 AM
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