Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman chaired her first pre-Budget meeting in Delhi on Monday with the first group of industry captains and experts in infrastructure and climate change. Union Ministers of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary and Bhagwat Kishanrao Karad were present, as were Finance Secretary TV Somanathan, secretaries from other departments of the finance ministry, and Chief Economic Advisor Anantha Nageswaran.
On November 22, FM Sitharaman will meet with representatives from the agriculture and agro-processing industries, as well as the financial sector and the capital market. On November 24, she will also meet with representatives from the services sector and trade bodies, as well as experts from the social sector, including health, education, water, and sanitation. The pre-budget consultations with trade union representatives and economists are set for November 28.
The budget for the next year will have to address critical issues of high inflation, boosting demand, job creation, and putting the economy on a sustained 8%-plus growth path.
The Ministry of Finance had informed earlier that the meeting would chew over the allocation of funds for all categories of expenditures.
The Budget for 2023-24 is expected to be presented on February 1. The government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi abolished the colonial-era practise of presenting the Budget at the end of February. On February 1, 2017, then-finance minister Arun Jaitley presented the annual accounts for the first time.
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