By BQ Desk and Nikunj Ohri
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said the government is confident of meeting its fiscal deficit target for the ongoing financial year.
“The government is confident and will strictly maintain the 3.3 percent fiscal deficit target for the year,” Jaitley told reporters after a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and top Finance Ministry officials. “The prime minister has expressed satisfaction with regards to the broad parameters in relation to the economy and the macroeconomic data which is emerging so far for this year.”
Late last evening, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, in a press briefing, announced a five-point plan to address the country’s increasing current account deficit.
- Mandatory hedging conditions for infrastructure loans will be reviewed.
- To permit manufacturing sector entities to avail external commercial borrowings up to $50 million with a minimum maturity of one year versus the earlier period of three years.
- Removal of exposure limits of 20 percent of foreign portfolio investors’ corporate bond portfolio to a single corporate group, company and related entities, and 50 percent of any issue of corporate bonds will be reviewed.
- Exemption from withholding tax for issuance of Masala Bond issues done in the ongoing financial year.
- Removal of restrictions on Indian banks’ market making in Masala Bonds, including restrictions on underwriting of such bonds.