Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will address another press conference at 4pm on Thursday to give out details of second tranche of the Rs 20 lakh crore economic package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to help revive the economy hit by coronavirus.
On Wednesday, Sitharaman announced the first installment of the mega relief package with 15 measures and extended guaranteed credit for small and medium businesses, non-financial banking companies and power distribution companies (discoms).
Sitharaman said the government will provide Rs 3 lakh crore worth of collateral free- automatic loans for businesses, including SMEs, a move that will help 45 lakh businesses. She also said the government will provide Rs 90,000 crore for power distribution companies via state-run power finance companies.
Rs 30,000 crore special liquidity scheme has also been introduced for NBFCs under which investments will be made in both primary and secondary market transactions in investment-grade debt papers of these institutions. These securities will be fully guaranteed by the government.
Sitharaman said the next wave of reforms with self-reliance as the guiding principle will focus on land, labour, liquidity and laws. “Essentially, this is to spur growth and to build a self-reliant India. That is why this initiative is called ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan’,” she said.
The finance Minister's announcements also aimed to improving the sagging morale of India's workforce, facing the brunt of a slowing economy and muted corporate earnings, by increasing take home pay temporarily by cutting EPF contribution from 12 to 10 per cent for the next three months. The due date for income tax returns for 2019-20 has also been pushed back.