Thursday, 4 March, 2010

A comment on the budget from the packaging industry

A few months ago we met Sanjay Bhatia the MD of Hindustan Tin Works and today we have received his comments about the recent budget presented to the Indian parliament by the Finance Minister, Pranab Mukherjee.

Sanjay Bhatia, MD, Hindustan Tin Works and Rexam HTW is also the Chairman of the Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP) and President of the Metal Can Manufacturers Association (MCMA). Mr. Bhatia was also on the Kelkar Committee and is on the current GST task force as well.

The post budget reaction of Mr Sanjay Bhatia:
"Overall it is a good budget because the government has reiterated its commitment towards reduction in fiscal deficit, [its} focus on food sector, [and its] thrust on food processing and reduction of post harvest food wastage. The setting up of five more food parks is indeed welcome and will benefit agro industries in a big way.

"The government has announced a number of social schemes on education, health, infrastructure, clean energy which is appreciated but the important thing in this is to ensure the right delivery system so that the money reaches the target population.

"On Direct Taxes: The reduction in surcharge from 10 – 7.5% will leave more money in the hands of corporates for further investment and growth.

"On Indirect Taxes: Increase in excise duty from 8 % to 10%, increase in duties on petroleum products and overall increase in excise duty having an impact of INR 43,500 crore would have inflationary impact across the board on all goods including consumer goods.

"On one hand, government has announced concessions for infrastructure however increases in the peak rate of excise duty in steel and cement goes against the infrastructure projects. The metal packaging industry would particularly like to express its deep appreciation for accepting its recommendation of increase in excise duty on OTSC Cans which would result into correcting inverted duty structure and help the industry to correct the huge balance lying in Cenvat a/c.

"Overall, it is a most predictable budget with virtually no surprises."

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