Budget 2013-14: Retail sector sees hope in GDP no; counts on supply reforms

Harsh Mariwala - CMD , Marico.

Stressing that high indirect taxes are crushing the retail and FMCG sector, industry leaders are demanding that the government reconsider the current rates of service taxes and excise duties in this year's Budget. While leaders are upbeat about the GST, views are divided on when it could finally roll in.

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Kishore Biyani, chief executive officer, Future Group, says, "The service tax which has been levied on the rental on properties should be a vettable tax. We should also get the input credit or output credit that are there."

According to Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), India's GDP is estimated to grow annually at 5 percent in FY13. This is worst growth estimate in a decade. Biyani, however, is hopeful. He says, "It looks promising now, and there is some roadmap which has come in. We are positive that it will come in soon. Atleast there is a surety of that coming in."

On India's widening current account deficit (CAD), Harsh Mariwala, chairman and managing director, Marico says, "I think there are some key challenges. The Finance Minister has to reduce the fiscal deficit and current account deficit. He has to ensure inflation doesn't increase and improve supply side reforms."