11-member expert panel suggests increasing borrowing limit to 5% of GSDP to revive Maharashtra economy

Mumbai: The 11-member committee comprising retired and serving bureaucrats has made a slew of suggestions to revive the Maharashtra economy which is badly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The committee has suggested the increase in additional borrowing limit to 5% from 3% of the gross state domestic product (GSDP).

The suggestion also includes differ National Small Saving Fund loan repayment by two years, non-debt transfer from Government of India and request the 15th Finance Commission for a special fund for COVID 19 measures.

Deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, who holds the finance and planning department, said the cabinet subcommittee discussed the findings of the committee and the report will be soon tabled before the cabinet to take further action. As reported by FPJ, the committee has expected that the revenue receipts for 2020-21 are likely to fall by 40-45% to Rs 1,40,000 crore.

Of the budget estimate of Rs 3,47,457 crore of revenue receipts, only Rs 2,07,000 crore is expected. The committee report, which is in FPJ’s possession, has suggested that for the revival of industry, the government should see that the banks increase the loan and overdraft limit without collaterals.

Banks need to introduce interest subvention schemes and the government should consider faster disbursement of its receivables to the industry. The State could use state lead bankers committee, district lead credit committee and lead bank machinery for making available liquidity to industry.

The government should waive or reduce or defer electricity-related duties and charges, rationalise water consumption costs and provide wage ex gratia assistance and subsidy schemes with delayed payment options.

The government should identify high revenue yielding sectors such as real estate, infrastructure, transport and excise and the infrastructure expenditure must be mitigated to support the economy.

On the revival of agriculture, the committee has suggested that a control room be set up at state and district levels in agriculture, fisheries and animal husbandry to address the ground level issues such as market operations, transportation and permits and input and the labour movement.

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