Finance Ministry to initiate budgetary exercise from October 14

The finance ministry will initiate the exercise to prepare the annual Budget for 2020-21 from October 14. The forthcoming Budget would have to address, among other things, critical issues pertaining to the slowdown in growth and subdued revenue collection.
It will be the second Budget of both the Modi 2.0 government and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
"The pre-Budget/RE (Revised Estimate) meetings will begin on the October 14, 2019. All financial advisers should ensure that the necessary details related to these meetings contained in the RE module of the UBIS (Union Budget Information System)," a Budget Circular (2020-21) of the budget division of the finance ministry's Department of Economic Affairs said.
The Budget Estimates for 2020-21 will be provisionally finalised after the expenditure secretary completes discussions with other secretaries and financial advisers. Pre-Budget meetings will begin from October 14 and continue till the first week of November, it said.
"Some of the new inclusions in the Circular relate to instructions regarding filling up of scheduled caste sub plan and tribal sub plan, gender, child budget statements, etc.," it said.
The Union Budget for 2020-21 is likely to be presented on Feb. 1.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government has scrapped the colonial-era tradition of presenting the Union Budget at the end of February. In 2017, the then finance minister, Arun Jaitley, had for the first time presented the budget on Feb. 1.
With the preponement of the Budget, ministries are now allocated their budgeted funds from the start of the financial year beginning April.
This gives government departments more leeway to spend as well as allow companies time to adapt to business and taxation plans.
Previously, when the Budget was presented at the end of February, the three-stage Parliament approval process used to get completed sometime in mid-May, just weeks ahead of the onset of monsoon rains.
This meant government departments would start spending on projects only from August-end or September, after the monsoon season ended.

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