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Budget 2019 | Low wages, more than unemployment, are the main issue

Employment, employability and ease of doing business must be the key priority, says Rituparna Chakraborty, President - Indian Staffing Federation.

July 03, 2019 / 01:14 PM IST

More than unemployment which was one of the key issues raised in the recently-concluded General Elections 2019, wage is more of an issue, says Indian Staffing Federation.

While it may not be that tough to land a job, wages are not up to the mark. Rituparna Chakraborty, President - Indian Staffing Federation, said it was imperative for the government to focus on formalisation, urbanisation, industrialisation, financialisation, and human capital in the upcoming Budget 2019.

India Staffing Federation is a platform for temporary work-force that are in the formal sector and ensures that they get their compensation, annual benefits and health benefits.

There are about 3.3 million people in the formal workforce in 2018. Labour reforms and further formalisation will add close to 11 million in the country.

“Employment, employability and ease of doing business must be the key priority,” Chakraborty added.

The organisation has put forward the following recommendations to facilitate the same.

  1. The government should consider partial exemption from GST for the outsourced services in higher education, from 18 percent to 5 percent to help create low-cost educational institutions that offer services at all levels, primary, secondary and higher education.

  1. The organisation proposes similar exemption on GST for the staffing industry from 18 percent to 5 percent to create the right incentives to formalise the contract staffing industry, as well as to boost the overall formal job creation, in India.

  1. The government should also look at setting up crèches with all the attendant facilities, as proposed in the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act 2017, and allow employees eligible for such benefit to use these “crèches” at a very nominal cost. The period of wages of 13 weeks may be extended to all women employees who are not covered under ESIC (Employees State Insurance), without any preconditions on wage ceiling or being a member of PF for one year.

  1. The government should also propose plans for the centralisation and complete digitalisation of compliance in order to lower compliance costs. Currently, organisations need to undertake over 60,000 compliances and over 3,800 filings a year to stay compliant which is contrary to the theme of the ease of doing business. The Shram Suvidha Portal must adopt the PPC – Paperless, Presenceless, Cashless framework in the interaction between employers and the government and employees and government.

  1. Another important area for the government to address in this budget is around Unique Enterprise Number (UEN). Creating a unique identifier at the company/legal entity level is a crucial infrastructure for the digital economy and ease-of-doing business. The UEN will enable various government entities such as issuing import licenses, building permits and employee provident fund to render services with a complete picture of the organisation.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jul 3, 2019 01:14 pm

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