Today, the FM of India announced the Indian Budget 2023-24 and it seems to get good affirmation from the gaming industry as a whole. Why? Well, decisions like no income tax up to Rs.7 lakhs or Make AI in India or even setup up 100 labs for developing applications using 5G services have been highly appreciated by major giants in the gaming industry.
A lot of eminent people in our Indian eSports & Gaming industry have reacted to the Indian Budget 2023 and here we bring their thoughts to you:
Here’s how the Indian eSports & Gaming industry reacted to Budget 2023-24:
Mr. Gaurav Kapoor, Chief Finance Officer, Baazi Games
“We welcome the Amrit Kaal Union Budget 2023 with an optimistic perspective. The new income tax regime will result in stimulating local demand and consumption in the economy. The rise of India’s position from an importer to an exporter of mobile phones in India augurs well for the online gaming sector.
Moreover, the announcement of setting up 100 labs for developing 5G services apps for smart classrooms, healthcare, and others will open up a new range of opportunities and potential employment. Simplifying the KYC system process will further help in realizing ‘Digital India’ and will enable a seamless experience for consumers. Lastly, the ‘Make in India’ vision will further get a boost with a focus on “Make AI in India and Make AI work for India”, online gaming companies can develop new AI-based advancements that can provide a first-of-its-kind experience to users.”
Mr. Sunil Yadav – CEO, PlayerzPot –
“It is rightly said that the Indian economy is on the right path and headed in the right direction. When the economy focuses on providing ample opportunities for citizens, particularly our nation’s youth, who are dedicated, focused, and enthusiastic about their goals, its development will be optimal. We are pleased to learn that the Budget 2023 has prioritized youth empowerment and the creation of new jobs.
It is a welcome move to define the future of the online gaming industry to remove the minimum threshold of Rs. 10,000 for TDS and to clarify taxability. The action will result in transparency, a clear legal identity, and standardized taxation for online gaming.
We hope that the government will unquestionably support the sector’s growth and development in the right direction, which will benefit the economy and its stakeholders.”
Vikash Sureka, Chief Financial Officer, Mobile Premier League (MPL)
“India’s online gaming industry is at a pivotal moment, and it’s great to see the government’s commitment to fostering its continued progress with Budget 2023.
The government in the Finance Bill has made a critical distinction between games of skill and games of chance, classifying them into separate sections. This signals the government’s recognition of the unique nature of each and the need for separate tax policies.
With the introduction of two new sections—194BA (for TDS of winnings from online games for online intermediaries) and 115BBJ (for computation of taxes for those who earn income from winnings of online games)—the government has cleared ambiguities regarding TDS calculation for online gaming and simplifies the process for both companies and users.
The Bill allows TDS to be calculated either at the end of the financial year or at withdrawal, streamlining settlements and returns for users. With this change, users who play multiple games will only have to pay tax at year-end based on their net winnings, eliminating the need to pay tax on notional credit. For companies, the TDS calculation process is simpler, improving compliance. This positive step for the skill-gaming industry has us hopeful for continued government support and guidance.
In addition, the regulations being drafted by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) will create a favourable environment for the industry to flourish. We eagerly await the government’s direction on this and are also keen to learn more about the GST mechanism for online gaming. A clear, fair tax rate will boost investor confidence and create a conducive business environment.
This year marks a turning point for the gaming industry and we look forward to collaborating with the government and other industry players to contribute to its growth and success.”
Paavan Nanda, Co-Founder, WinZO games
“It’s heartening to witness TDS for Online Gaming finding significant mention in this year’s Union budget presented by the Hon’ble Minister for Budget 2023. The proposed changes lend clarity to the Gaming companies while creating an airtight accounting system for the exchequer. Aligning it with a player’s Net Winnings in a Financial Year seems like a just provision for the 500MM online gamers in India.
Recognising and carving out a separate clause in the act for ‘Online Gaming’ as against gambling or betting is in line with Meity’s recent draft amendment to IT rules for Online Gaming, and is a testimony to the government’s genuine intent to nurture the burgeoning sector. The single most important aspect that the sector awaits clarity on and something that would decide its fate is the outcome from GoM on the GST. We are hopeful that the outcome would retain the current 18% tax slab on gross gaming commissions, and promise to overachieve the $10Trillion economy goal by our Hon’ble Prime Minister well before 2030″