BudgetSpeak #3: Ashish Bhasin: Need for incentives to do more R&D

25 Jun,2014

By Ashish Bhasin

 

Rationalization of Tax Practice on Advertising and Media Industry: Here, specific reference is to the service tax which has to be rationalized. The surcharges need to be removed. Service tax is chargeable only on our kind of service industry therefore there should not be any VAT-related harassment.

 

Simplify Tax Processes: Nobody minds paying the tax but the interpretation particularly by tax authorities, government and the entire chain is inclined towards harassment. Grey areas are deliberately left open for interpretation which allows them the power to exploitation. So the simplification of the process has to be made completely transparent and easy for any person to follow.

 

Policies for General Economic Development: Advertising as an industry is very dependent upon how the overall industry is faring. We would like to see policies which are for the general benefit for the industry which then directly or indirectly benefits the advertising industry.

 

Special Incentives for the Advertising and Media Industry: We have never been recognized as an industry. For example, Cement, Iron and Steel, etc. have been there for hundreds of years and therefore recognized as an industry. We are significantly newer in terms of contribution to exchequer. We have never been given status as an industry. Therefore there should be incentives to do more research and development, to create opportunities for teaching advertising as a craft and as a profession. Some benefits should be announced which will accrue and help us become a more robust industry.

 

Clear Decision-Making: Policies like FDI, foreign investment in media, monitoring agencies and FM Phase III require clear decision making and the implementation of the same.

 

Ashish Bhasin is Chairman & CEO South Asia Dentsu Aegis Network, Chairman Posterscope and psLive – Asia Pacific

 

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