Pre-budget expectations: Union Budget 2019 has been saved
Pre-budget expectations: Union Budget 2019
Technology, Media & Telecommunications
To accelerate employment generation, incentivising corporates to invest in education and skilling the workforce, especially in the IT – ITES sectors, is likely to be on the cards. Section 80 JJAA benefits may be extended to a larger section of employers such as professionals to encourage employment. The weighted deduction u/s 35CCD for skill development projects may be revamped.
For SEZ, the income tax holiday sunset on 31 March 2020 and duty reliefs could be revisited to accelerate growth of IT exports, as new age tech such as AI takes centrestage.
The scope of safe harbor transactions was increased in 2017 to provide certainty to taxpayers. Suitable amendments to include distribution of content by an Indian company under the safe harbor regime will help the fast growing media and entertainment sector. Similarly, extending Section 72A benefits to the Broadcasting sector, which allows industrial undertakings to carry forward tax losses in case of mergers or amalgamation, will help the sector.
For a fast-track 5G adoption, the government may introduce an investment allowance/ weighted deduction not only for spectrum but also for the capital spend. 5G-related R&D may be given additional relief.
While India takes a firm stand at the G20 for taxing the digital economy based on a proportional approach, it is to be seen whether any enabling amendments will be made in the Tax laws further to the Significant Economic Presence provisions made in Finance Act 2018.
Government and Public Services
How can we sense and act upon a future that remains unclear? The good news is that much of the technology-driven disruption that each of us experiences today—and will likely experience going forward—is understandable and knowable.