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At the same time, the government must address the issue of reducing the employability of young graduates. The pandemic has definitely affected the quality of education and training among students in urban areas where large facilities are available. One can only imagine what a breakthrough this would be for the rural education system. Skill development based on industry requirements and vocational training are areas where accelerated growth is needed.

We need more openings in the qualified market space to sustain domestic consumption.

Recently, our Prime Minister announced his plans for Amritkal – the next 25 years to the centenary of India’s independence, where he said that India will play an important role in setting the course for the world. Indian dairy industry also has its targets set till 2047. We are the largest milk producer in the world since 1997 and our target is to increase our contribution to world milk production to 45%. Although the government recognizes the importance of dairying to India’s growth, it is yet to allocate proportionate budgetary resources to the sector. Strategic tax incentives for farmers are currently needed to increase the profitability of agriculture and dairying in the country and encourage the next generation of farmers to join the sector and invest their time and resources in the business. The inclusion of dairy products in the spectrum of farm income would bring much-needed relief to dairy farmers and become a major boost to the government’s goal of doubling farmers’ income. Employment options covering 60% of India’s population living in Bharat will encourage them to stay and boost the rural economy. Not only this, but it will also help the government in monitoring excessive urban migration resulting in higher unemployment rates in urban India.

From the consumer’s point of view, it is imperative that the government reviews the GST rates applicable to several essential products. Products like ghee are taxed at the final price or at the stage of production, which ultimately affects the purchasing behavior of customers as well as the commercial viability of producers. Similarly, molasses used in feed plants is taxed at 28%, which also affects feed rates. Further, fodder does not attract any GST, resulting in these fodder factories not getting any input credit.

Despite the overall financial growth that India has shown, the fact remains that we are still dependent on imports of key sectors like edible oil, energy, etc. encourage indigenous production and self-reliance in all sectors. As India marches into 2023 with the world looking at the country’s financial trajectory amid uncertain global headwinds, the upcoming budget will be India’s roadmap not just for the next financial year, but for times to come.

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