Friday March 22, 2019
Home India Repercussions...

Repercussions of Jaitley’s budget on Indian diaspora in Oman

0
//
Image source: huffingtonpost.in

Oman: The Indian expatriates in Oman hailed India’s annual budget of 2016-17 which was presented by the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday in New Delhi. Expats said that easing of customs declaration and an increase of free baggage allowance will be helpful for Indians living outside the country.

The latest budget also proposed to amend provisions dealing with the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) of the Non-Resident Indians, which are currently subjected to a higher rate for NRIs without the permanent account number (PAN) card. The proposed amendment will ensure that higher rate of TDS is not imposed on furnishing alternate documents.

The budget also makes an ease on custom baggage rules for international passengers. “The filing of baggage declaration will be required only for those passengers, who carry dutiable goods,” Jaitley said in his budget speech.

“Expats had also hoped for a simplification of income tax processes and more relief on TDS. Besides, there is nothing on housing or an immediate relief in prices of basic commodities and personal taxes to create savings for the future for us,’’ said Sunil Kumar, an Indian expat living in Oman.

Yusuffali MA, Chairman of Lulu Group, the largest retail chain in the Middle East said that Jaitley is clearly highlighting the growth pillars of the economy by insuring rural, social, agriculture, skill, business and tax reforms. He also described it as a sensible budget which will make a positive impact on many sectors.

“I am happy that the government has stressed on the ‘Make in India’ campaign by providing tax and duty benefits and these will go a long way in strengthening the manufacturing capabilities and infrastructure facilities of India. The Finance Minister’s focus on agriculture was keenly awaited and will enhance expenditure on the rural and agriculture sectors, which in turn will enhance food security and boost exports. According to me, the ‘three years of tax holiday’ for start-ups is one of the most exciting announcements of this budget. The next generation of skilled entrepreneurs are our future and this will bring in the much-needed impetus. Another highlight would be the 100 per cent FDI (foreign direct investment) in food processing business. This will be news to many international players, who are looking to set up business in India and we all must welcome this.”

“Being a retailer, obviously, I am pleased to note that the minister mentioned retail as the largest service sector employer in the country and many more jobs opportunities can be created, provided the regulations are simplified. From a common NRI’s point of view, the easing of customs declaration and increasing of free baggage allowance are a welcome step,” Yusuffali added.

Reacting to the budget, K V Shamsudheen, the chairman of Pravasi Bandhu Welfare Trust, while speaking about the third budget, said that it focused on total infrastructure development including agriculture, health, social development, education, and daily life of the common people. Under the budget 2016-17, the government has targeted to double the income of farmers by 2022 (Fifteen per cent of India’s economy is based on the agriculture sector).

“This will change the face of India by making it an economic super power in the future. Indian diaspora’s remittances are among the world’s highest and NRIs contribute a big amount towards the foreign currency reserve of the country. “We have been proposing to the government to utilize NRIs’ financial resources, expertise, experience and business contacts for the development of the country,” he said.

He added: “We have two important initiatives ‘Make in India’ and the ‘National Skill Development Mission,’ which can be developed successfully with the participation of NRIs. Even though we are keen on this proposal,” he added.

According to the current price chart, a female passenger can hold only 32 grams of gold jewellery and a male passenger can take only 16 grams of gold jewellery with them, which is too little.

All the items carry from abroad are based on quantity but gold is based on value.

“So, we request allowance for gold jewellery to be raised to 50 grammes for male passengers and 100 grammes for female passengers and also request that gold allowance is based on weight as per the rule,” Shamsudheen said.

Lateef Shahdad, a Chartered Marketer said that it is the time to see the implementation of the budget, said it is a ‘rational one’ and expressing approval for the number of measures.

(With inputs from Times of Oman)

Next Story

After Failed Hanoi Summit, U.S. Imposes First North Korea-Linked Sanctions

Trump and Kim have held two summits — the first in Singapore last June and the second in Hanoi this February. Trump has not ruled out a third such meeting.

0
South Korea
Protesters march toward the U.S. Embassy during a rally supporting the U.S. policy to put steady pressure on North Korea, in Seoul, South Korea, Nov. 3, 2018. VOA

With negotiations at an impasse, Washington has imposed additional sanctions on those assisting Pyongyang — the first such action since February’s failed summit in Hanoi between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

“This is not really about intensification of pressure,” a senior U.S. administration official said. “This is about maintaining pressure as defined by the international community.”

FILE - In this Feb. 28, 2019, photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, accompanied by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, speaks at a news conference in Hanoi, following talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump said he walked away from his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un because Kim demanded the U.S. lift all of its sanctions.
In this Feb. 28, 2019, photo, U.S. President Donald Trump, accompanied by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, speaks at a news conference in Hanoi, following talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump said he walked away from his second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un because Kim demanded the U.S. lift all of its sanctions. VOA

Thursday’s sanctions by the U.S. Treasury Department on two China-based shipping companies were the latest evidence of some “leakage” in the enforcement of sanctions by Beijing, but U.S. officials said that overall, China was abiding by the U.N. resolutions slapped on North Korea for its nuclear weapon and ballistic missile programs.

Washington wants Pyongyang to surrender its entire nuclear arsenal and other mass-destruction weapons before being granted any relief from sanctions. The North Koreans insist on sanctions relief before halting production of fissile materials.

“Insisting on unilateral North Korean disarmament upfront is pushing on the wrong door. We should be pushing to first slow the program, then cap it, and ultimately keep rollback and disarmament the long-term goal,” said Vipin Narang, associate professor of political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “But every month that passes without a grand deal is one in which North Korea’s nuclear program continues to grow larger — increasing the risk of its own use and proliferation to other countries — and the chances of a deal grow smaller.”

 

FILE - In this undated image from video distributed Jan. 1, 2019, by North Korean broadcaster KRT, leader Kim Jong Un delivers a speech in North Korea.
In this undated image from video distributed Jan. 1, 2019, by North Korean broadcaster KRT, leader Kim Jong Un delivers a speech in North Korea. VOA

Analysts also worry Kim could grow impatient, turn away from diplomacy with Trump and look to China to provide sanctions relief that North Korea desperately needs.

“I’m not sure we can be confident that Beijing will uphold enforcement after Trump so abruptly walked away from negotiations with North Korea,” said Jean Lee, who directs the center for Korean history and public policy at the Wilson Center, a global policy research group in Washington. “I do hope North Korea sticks to negotiation and does not resort to provocation. If Pyongyang doesn’t get the response it craves and needs from Washington, North Korea may turn back to a tried and tested strategy: to get Trump, and the world’s attention, with another illicit missile launch or test.”

U.S. officials on Thursday, speaking to reporters on condition of not being named, expressed patience and confidence with their stance toward North Korea.

Patience

“What they’re facing now is unprecedented,” said one U.S. official of the sanctions on North Korea. “We’ll give it some time.”

Lee, currently in Seoul, told VOA she found it “interesting that we’re back to a form of strategic patience. There was high hope, especially here in Seoul, that Trump’s impatience and unpredictability would lead to fast movement on North Korea. But the Trump administration is finding that it’s much tougher than the president may have thought of simply bullying Kim into acquiescence.”

A prolonged lull in talks “could become risky, and maintaining maximalist positions will not be sustainable,” said Duyeon Kim, an adjunct senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, a national security research group in Washington.

FILE - In this Dec. 21, 2018, photo, a North Korean woman walks outside Bugsae Shop, also known as the "Singapore Shop," in Pyongyang. Business is booming at such shops, which sell everything from Ukrainian vodka to brand-name knock-offs from China. The stores stock many of the very things U.N. sanctions banning trade in luxury goods are intended to block.
In this Dec. 21, 2018, photo, a North Korean woman walks outside Bugsae Shop, also known as the “Singapore Shop,” in Pyongyang. Business is booming at such shops, which sell everything from Ukrainian vodka to brand-name knock-offs from China. The stores stock many of the very things U.N. sanctions banning trade in luxury goods are intended to block. VOA

“They need to negotiate a denuclearization-peace road map soon and preferably an interim agreement on fissile materials. Rapid and complete denuclearization is not realistic. Denuclearization will have to occur in stages but in accordance with an agreed road map on how this all ends,” Kim told VOA.

The current primary point of pressure on Pyongyang by the international community is on entities, including their ships, involved with illicitly exporting North Korean goods, such as coal, and taking products — especially petroleum — into the impoverished country in violation of U.N. sanctions.

Unless North Korea denuclearizes, “we’re going to maintain that pressure,” a senior U.S official said.

Daily monitoring

A coalition of countries — using their vessels, aircraft and classified intelligence means — are daily watching the movement of ships involved in the illegal trade.

North Korea and those helping it are trying to obscure identities of ships and cargo by disabling or manipulating systems that identify the vessels for safety and navigation, physically altering vessel identifications and making ship-to-ship transfers to avoid ports, according to a sanctions advisory jointly issued Thursday by the U.S. Treasury and State departments and the Coast Guard.

Neither the United States nor any other country has moved to interdict the offending ships.

FILE - This photo released by Japan's Ministry of Defense shows what it says is the North Korean-flagged tanker Yu Jong 2, left, and the Min Ning De You 078 lying alongside in the East China Sea, Feb. 16, 2018.
This photo released by Japan’s Ministry of Defense shows what it says is the North Korean-flagged tanker Yu Jong 2, left, and the Min Ning De You 078 lying alongside in the East China Sea, Feb. 16, 2018. VOA

“I don’t want to talk about potential steps we may or may not take,” replied a senior administration official when asked by VOA whether there was discussion here about using the U.S. Navy or Coast Guard in international waters to take such action.

Also Read: “Saw Blood Flowing Like A River”: Survivor Recounts New Zealand Mosque Attacks

Trump and Kim have held two summits — the first in Singapore last June and the second in Hanoi this February. Trump has not ruled out a third such meeting.

“The door is wide open to continuing the dialogue with North Korea. The president wants to see progress at the working level, and he’s engaged as well,” a senior administration official said. (VOA)