In as much as our Prime Minister opines that the Budget is a “sanjeevani (new life) to the “moribund economy”, I am optimistic that the Budget will bring to end the media crisis currently engulfing us.
Economic slowdown has caused a severe stress on customer spends. Media is a derived business and hence, is bound to get impacted, and it will. The economy looks to be getting back and stronger growth is envisaged. Inflation is likely to be contained to 8 per cent by year-end and it is encouraging to note efforts are on to get this down to 6 per cent by next year-end.
The Budget shows a particular pattern and it is evident it will help open up several sectors, including infrastructure, retail, jewellery, FMCG and branded apparels. Increase in FDI in Insurance, Railways and Defence will bring in growth to these sectors.
Duty reductions on LCD/LED panels and footwear will give a fillip to these sectors. Non-conventional energy like solar panels will grow both B2B and B2C segments and will need the support of media. I stay optimistic and this Budget reinforces my stand even more.
The author is Vice President (Advertising), The Hindu Group of Publications. These are my personal views.