Budget 2017 signals dawn of digital economy in India

New Delhi: A slew of measures announced during the Budget-2017 will encourage digital financial transactions and play an important role in curbing black and unaccounted money, thus ensuring greater transparency.

Various measures announced by the Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley indicate a clear push towards a digital economy. Views from various industries reveal that the new measures will herald the dawn of digital economy.

Piyush Jain, CEO and co-founder Impact Guru:

Not only does the cap on political funding cut down the anonymity of large donations which has increasing importance since the black money crack down, it also echoes demonetisations’ shift towards a digital economy.

Similarly, the government has proposed the limit of cash donation which can be received by a charitable organisation to be reduced from Rs 10,000 to Rs 2,000.

These two changes means both NGOs and political parties will need to act now towards investing in channels to support the dawn of the digital economy, proving an important time for online fundraising platforms such as crowdfunding.

Sameer Segal (Co-Founder and CEO) Artoo:

The government has employed the right measures to ensure easy adoption of digital transactions across the country. The problem of adoption begins with merchants, and the decision to incentivise digital payments for them with cash-backs, will help in pushing the digital ecosystem forward.

The focus on rural and semi-urban areas through post office, banking correspondents, Aadhar Pay for those without mobile phones, is another critical step to enabling and stabilising the ecosystem, and will help improve access and trust in the nascent payments infrastructure in the country.

Additionally, the reduction in corporate tax will help mature and bootstrapped start-ups in scaling their business on a solid foundation.

Sundeep Kumar, Executive Director - Corporate Affairs & Communications, Dalmia Bharat Group:

It is a positive and decisive budget coming especially against the backdrop of the Government’s boldest measure of demonetization.

With a focus on rural and agricultural development, housing, clean energy, elimination of poverty, providing basic necessities to the farmers, waivers for senior citizens in Government schemes and a promise of aiding  Skill India and Digital India campaigns, the Government has presented an all-inclusive budget this time around.

Abhishek Bansal, Executive Director, Pacific India:

The government’s initiatives towards digital payments will benefit retail growth in the long term. Affordable housing has been given a huge impetus. This along with other initiatives like impetus towards skill development, Tax regime, jobs creation and will act as a big push towards the government’s make in India and smart city initiatives

Amit Bhor (Co-Founder and CEO) Walnut:

The Budget announcements are a good news for fintech companies. By promoting BHIM, UPI, Aadhar and other digital payments, government has accelerated adoption of cashless payments. This will drive growth of the fintech sector as well.

Rajiv Raj, Co-Founder and Director, CreditVidya:

The Government's decision to enhance the digital payment infrastructure by providing incentives​ ​​​is a powerful move towards creating a Digital India.

This will help deepen digital footprints of Indian consumers, which will in turn enable superior credit underwriting and profiling for millions of individuals ​​who do not have access to credit at a reasonable rate, leading to greater financial inclusion.

Dr Vivekanand Jha, Executive Director, The George Institute for Global Health India:

We applaud the digital health village idea, which provides a good opportunity to take an integrated, evidence-informed approach to management of chronic diseases. It would be important to move from slogans to evidence-based implementation plans.