Post budget opinion by Madhavan Menon – Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Limited.

The Union Budget 2022-23 reflected a development and investment orientation, with much needed emphasis on infrastructure, technology, skill development and health.

From a Travel & Tourism perspective however, the Union Budget has been disappointing. The Budget made no reference to the industry’s recommendations to aid revival, including rationalization of taxes (a complete GST holiday, exemption of TCS on outbound tours, reduction in indirect taxes), removal of SIES benefit capping of Rs 5 cr.

For a sector that is a key contributor to the Country’s GDP and brings in valuable foreign exchange earnings, with a force multiplier impact on employment and skill development, a stimulus would have created significant value in supporting the country’s road to recovery and growth.

The limited relief in acknowledgement of the severe impact to the hospitality sector, was the extension of the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) to March 2023, with an expansion by​ Rs. 50,000 crores to a total of​ Rs. 5 lakh crore.

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