ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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State Level Debt–Deficit Dynamics

An analysis of the debt and deficit of states based on the budget estimates of 2016–17 shows that almost half of them have a fiscal deficit target higher than the limit set in the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act. These states need to focus on the quality of expenditure and elimination of revenue deficit as per the framework proposed by the Fourteenth Finance Commission to enhance state-level capital spending.

Business as Usual

The global situation is tense, marked with protectionism. The domestic environment is constrained by the twin balance sheet crisis. The dull investment climate was further jeopardised by the note ban. The budget has failed to create a policy environment to kick-start a virtuous investment cycle. It has failed to address critical issue of accelerating employment.

Karnataka's Changing Fiscal Landscape

Analysing the second Karnataka budget since the Fourteenth Finance Commission award, it is noted that, as assured, more fiscal space is made available to the state government. With greater untied funds, the state has budgeted for higher capital expenditure in some key areas--urban development, police, and tribal welfare--even as it failed to build capacity for power generation, and has introduced too many schemes with too little funds allocated to each.

Beyond Fiscal Prudence and Consolidation

Since sustainable deficit could be different than the numeric fiscal rule, a review of the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act is timely and important. However, such a review should bear in mind that macro-stabilisation is a central function and the burden of fiscal adjustment should squarely fall on the union government keeping state debt and deficits withinFRBM limits. Maintaining the higher tax to gross domestic product ratio of last year will be key for fiscal prudence in 2016-17.

Tax Change with Retrospective Effect

The legality and propriety of the retrospective withdrawal of excise duty exemption for cigarettes and pan masala manufactured in the north-east. A critical examination.

Risks and the Budget

In the Budget for 2003-04 the government has sought to underwrite risks faced by different segments of the population. When governments assume additional risks it is necessary to ask whether the mode of risk mitigation proposed is appropriate and who would benefit from such intervention. An attempt is made here to examine these and related questions in relation to the budget.

Horizontal Imbalances in India

Horizontal imbalances (measured by the coefficient of variation in own revenue as a percentage of total expenditure) persist in India even today mainly due to a host of economic and political factors. Variations in tax base, tax effort, infrastructural facilities - both physical and social - and political uncertainty are found to be the important determinants of horizontal imbalances. The dispersion in horizontal imbalance can only be reduced through all-round development of the poorer states. General-purpose transfers from the centre are essential for horizontal equity but they cannot ensure a permanent solution.

Relative Tax Performances

Analysis for Selected States in India In a federal form of government structure like that of India, the state-level governments receive supplementary budgetary resources from the central government as support for the former
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