India’s 2022-23 Union Budget
For the past two years, the Indian political economy has gone through three crises: pandemic, an economic disaster from the coronavirus-induced restrictions, and a deep loss of trust between the state and the electorate.
Nirmala Sitharaman; Finance Minister of India, On Tuesday, outlined plans to spend 39.45 trillion Indian rupees (529.7 billion USD) for the coming fiscal year that starts on April 1. The current budget is up from 37.7 trillion rupees (515.5 billion USD) as compared to the previous one. She promised to focus on stepping up investments in building highways and railways but did not offer any direct giveaways for the poor or the middle class to spur consumption.
It is her fourth and second in a pandemic-hit economy. It primarily focuses on scaling up the wager on the public capital spending, in order to revive private investments and job creation through a righteous growth cycle.
In her speech, Sitharaman stated that despite being in the focus of an Omicron wave, India was “in a strong position to resist challenges”, quoting economic progress of 9.2 percent that it is expected to clock in the current financial year which will end in March, and which is the highest among all the big economies. The government expects the economy to grow at a somewhat lower rate of 8 to 8.5 percent for the coming year.