Around 37 bills are listed on the agenda for the month-long session, according to an official at the Lower House of Parliament.
Some investors believe the government, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is in a better position now to undertake bold reforms, because it recently won majority seats in two large states, Maharashtra and Haryana.
“There’s an expectation of pickup in the reform process, there’s an expectation of government getting the (execution of) infrastructure projects back on track,” said Navneet Munot, chief investment officer at Mumbai-based SBI Funds Management Pvt., which manages around 725 billion rupees ($12 billion).
Here are the key bills investors will be watching out for:
Insurance: An insurance bill that would raise the foreign investment limit in Indian insurance companies to 49% from 26% is expected to come up in this session. This bill has been in discussion for years. Some analysts are hopeful it will at last be cleared in this session.
If that happens, India’s insurance sector could get $1 billion to $2 billion in fresh foreign investment, according to some estimates.
This is “much needed capital,” said Abizer Diwanji, Mumbai-based head of financial services at Ernst & Young LLP. Indian partners of insurance joint ventures have found it difficult to make additional investments in these companies, he said.
Uniform Tax Code: Another key bill relates to the implementation of a national goods and services tax that seeks to replace a myriad of state and federal taxes with a single tax regime to ease doing business.
Analysts estimate that such a tax can add one to two percentage points to India’s economic growth.
This law has also been in the works for years, with the biggest hurdle being that various states – ruled by different political parties – need to agree on the tax. Last week Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the most contentious issues between states and the federal government were resolved.
While this bill is likely to be tabled in this session, analysts don’t expect it to be implemented any time soon. “Implementation is likely only in 2016 at the earliest,” UBS Securities said in a recent research note.
Land Acquisition Bill: Difficulty in buying land to set up businesses and factories is often cited as one of the biggest hurdles to doing business in India.
The erstwhile Congress-led government had last year passed a law seeking compensation for farmland taken over for industrial projects, but the law made it expensive and cumbersome for industries to buy large swathes of land.
India’s Rural Development Ministry has now suggested that the bill be watered down, to speed up government approvals. The government could discuss this in the upcoming Parliament session.
Coal law: Analysts expect that the Parliament will convert into law a recent ordinance created by the government for the auctioning of more than 200 coal blocks.
The Supreme Court had ordered the government to auction these coal blocks, in a transparent manner. Shortly thereafter, the government came out with a process to do so via an ordinance, but that has now to be cleared in Parliament.
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