INDIA BUDGET 2022: Green Energy in Focus

India’s 2022 Budget seeks to provide a boost to Green Energy. The Budget allocates a massive 195 billion Indian Rupees for Production Linked Incentive (PLI) for manufacturing of high-efficiency module for polysilicon to boost solar capacity in India. Announcing the outlay, India’a finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the risk of climate change is the strongest negative that affects countries across the world, and the Indian government plans to reduce carbon emissions by up to 35% by 2030 as part of a commitment under the Paris Climate Agreement.

In addition to the above, this year’s national Budget also provides for a boost to the Electric Vehicle industry by as it seeks to introduce a new policy for battery swapping to boost sales of electric vehicles. Swapping allows EV drivers to replace depleted battery blocks for freshly charged ones at swap stations which is faster than charging the vehicle

The government will give $6 billion in incentives to companies to build clean vehicles and produce batteries locally as it plans for electric cars to make up 30% of total private car sales by 2030 and for electric motorcycles and scooters to make up 40% of total sales.

India signs free trade agreement with the UAE

India and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Friday signed a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) that is set to benefit almost 90 per cent of trade -- both exports and imports-- between the two countries. The trade deal has also provided a permanent safeguard mechanism, which will safeguard exporters and businesses from both countries from any unwarranted surge in volumes of any particular product, India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said.

Several sectors, such as gems and jewellery, leather, plastic products, agriculture products, medical devices, pharmaceutical products, and automobiles will benefit from the agreement. India has given duty concessions on gold exported from the UAE, while Indian exporters will attract zero per cent duty on jewellery. The trade pact will provide significant benefits to Indian and UAE businesses, including enhanced market access and reduced tariffs. It is expected that the CEPA will lead to an increase in bilateral trade from the current $60 billion to $100 billion in the next five years.

India to tax income from cryptocurrencies and digital assets at 30%

India will impose a tax of 30% on income from cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said while presenting the country’s annual budget. Aside from placing earnings from cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in India's highest tax band, Sitharaman also said that losses from their sale could not be offset against other income, delivering another disincentive to trading and investment in digital assets.

Industry estimates suggest there are 15 million to 20 million crypto investors in India, with total crypto holdings of around 400 billion rupees ($5.37 billion). No official data is available on the size of the Indian crypto market

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