New Delhi- The government on Monday will kick off its annual Budget making exercise for financial year 2023-24, that is expected to look at measures to revive growth amid a gloomy global outlook.
The meeting would start with consultations with various ministries and departments on the revised estimates (RE) of expenditure for ongoing financial year and the fund requirement for 2023-24.
On the first day on Monday, RE meetings with Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Ministry of Labour And Employment, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation and Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports would take place.
Most of these discussions to finalise RE for ongoing financial year (2022-23) and Budget Estimate for 2023-24 would be chaired by the Finance Secretary and Expenditure Secretary.
The month-long deliberations would end on November 10, with consultations with Ministry of Cooperation, Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Department of Agricultural Research and Education, Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Ministry of Railways and Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, as per a notification of Budget Division of the finance ministry.
The Budget Estimates for 2023-24, will be provisionally finalised after completion of pre-Budget meetings.
These meetings would take place against the backdrop of many institutions, including the Reserve Bank and the World Bank slashing India’s growth forecast to 7 per cent and 6.5 per cent, respectively.
It will be the fifth Budget of the Narendra Modi 2.0 government and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and the last full Budget before the general elections due in April-May 2024.
During the election year, the government presents Vote on Account for the limited period. Usually, the Budget is cleared till July.
The Budget 2023-24 is likely to be presented on February 1, during the first half of Parliament’s Budget session which usually begins in the last week of January every year.
The Budget 2022-23 had projected a growth rate of 7-7.5 per cent in real terms while fiscal deficit was pegged at 6.4 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP).
Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government scrapped the colonial-era tradition of presenting the Budget at the end of February. The then finance minister Arun Jaitley had for the first time presented the annual accounts on February 1, 2017.
With the change in the date of Budget presentation, ministries are now allocated their budgeted funds from the start of a financial year beginning April. This gives government departments more leeway to spend as well as allow companies time to adapt to business and taxation plans.
Previously, when Budget was presented at the end of February, the three-stage Parliament approval process would get completed some time in mid-May, weeks ahead of the onset of monsoon rains.
This meant government departments would start spending on projects only from August-end or September, after the monsoon season ended. (PTI)