Posted by : Varun Doshi
On : 11 July 2014
Comments : 0
Views : 1522
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's Budget 2014 has received mixed reactions by industry veterans. It has made some very good announcements and schemes for health-care sector, but pharmaceutical sector feels like they are left out.
Announcements for Health-care sector:
1) Free drugs, diagnosis to ensure 'Health for All' priority
2) Four new AIIMS to be setup in Andhra, Vidarbha, West Bengal and Purvanchal
3) Increasing FDI cap tp 49% on insurance
4) E-visas to boost medical tourism
However, there is almost nothing for the Indian pharmaceutical industry in the budget. None of its expectations have been met including the demand to boost research and development in pharma and removing Minimum Alternate Tax (MAT) on pharma Special Economic Zones (SEZs). None of this found any mention in the speech.
Satish Reddy, President of the Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance and Chairman of Dr Reddy's, says there were no measures for the pharma sector in the budget speech and maybe one needs to look at the fine print.
On service taxes, withdrawal of exemption in case of technical testing of newly developed drugs on humans, is being seen as a negative by the pharma industry.
"This is very disappointing," said Swati Piramal, Vice Chairperson, Piramal Enterprises, pointing out that the clinical trials were already moving out of India and an additional tax will not help improve matters."