Here's what millennials are hoping for from the upcoming Union Budget 2021.
The Union Budget 2021-22 will be presented in Parliament on February 1, 2021. After a year fraught with economic challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, millennials have pinned their hopes on the budget to revive the economy and bring that much needed cheer. We got in touch with millennials to understand their key expectations of the budget. Here's what we found out:
- Increase in tax deduction limit under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act so that they can save more tax.
- Increase in deductions for medical insurance under Section 80D of IT Act
- Higher public healthcare expenditure outlay
- A greater push for startups, and the creation of an enabling environment for investors
- Cheaper travel, with relief measures for badly-hit sectors like aviation, hospitality and tourism
- A greater push for electric vehicles; more spending on tackling air pollution
With 'B-day' just around the corner, millennials are hoping the government has some good things in store for them. They are looking at Budget 2021 with greater expectations than ever before so that they can put the year gone by behind them.
So, what exactly do millennials want from the Union Budget 2021?
Higher healthcare allocation and increased exemptions under Section 80D:
2020 has been a year of COVID-19 and not surprisingly, health is on everyone's mind. Millennials say that we should take a lesson from the crisis and become better prepared for similar situations in the post-pandemic world.
Mira, a doctor, says the government should allocate more resources to bolster the public healthcare sector and improve medical infrastructure to cope with future pandemics. Others we spoke to echoed Mira's sentiments. Better infrastructure and preparedness can save many lives in future public health crises.
At an individual level, many millennials said that the government should provide more relief on health related expenditures by offering greater tax deductions under Section 80D of the Income Tax Act (which covers medical insurance and preventive health check-up). People feel that this will help them better manage their finances in unforeseen medical emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic.
Boost for tourism, hospitality and aviation- sectors that have taken a massive hit:
Millennials, who love to travel, have had to keep their wanderlust under check in the year gone by. They are now keeping their fingers crossed for cheaper travel in the post-pandemic world so that they can make up for the lost time. The hospitality and aviation sectors are among the most badly hit by the pandemic, with most countries locked down for months. Avid travellers are hoping that the government may announce some relief measures to give these sectors the much-needed boost for revival. Nishant and Kriti, both of whom had put off their post-wedding travel plans until after the pandemic, are now keeping an eye out for how they can plan their budget honeymoon once the situation improves.
More jobs, push for employment:
The lockdown hit a lot of businesses badly, who, in turn, had to resort to layoffs. Kunal, an IT professional, lost his job last year after his office shut during the lockdown. He hopes the government will announce a series of measures to create new job opportunities. Many hope the budget will offer incentives to sectors that employ large numbers of young millennials like the IT sector.
Income tax relief and benefits for home buyers:
Many salaried people are hoping the government will raise the tax deduction limits under Section 80C from Rs. 1.5 Lakh currently, which allows them to save taxes. Shaili is also hoping for an increase in the threshold income level not under taxation from Rs. 2.5 Lakh currently. This will enable her to save more tax and spend more.
One of the biggest assets that millennials aspire for is a home. While interest rates have fallen and made home loans more affordable, they are also hoping for greater tax sops and incentives for home buyers.
Sustained push for startups:
Many young millennials dream of starting their own businesses. While several incentives and measures have been taken in recent times to encourage startups, there is hope that the government would strengthen the sector further. Outlays focussed on encouraging investors, simplifying compliance norms for startups, further tax breaks and relaxations to ease their worry over losing their 'startup' status are among the top items on the wishlist.
Focus on the environment, push for EVs (electric vehicles) and more spending to ensure clean, breathable air:
Millennials are more conscious about conserving and protecting the environment for a better future. Many agreed on the need for higher government spending to control air pollution. They hope that the budget would give a more significant push to electric vehicles, and incentivise consumers to switch from petrol/diesel vehicles to EVs.
While Finance Minister Sitharaman has said that the Union Budget 2021-22 will be one like 'never before'. It remains to be seen whether the proposals will meet the desires of millennials. They are keenly looking forward to what the 'bahi khaata' or the budget briefcase has in store for them and the economy. In the meantime, what do you want from the upcoming Union Budget 2021-22?
*The article is purely for informational purposes. DBS Bank does not endorse nor support any of the opinions/views mentioned above. Names of individuals have been changed on request to protect their identity and privacy.
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