Budget Expectations from Ms Aditi Balbir, Co-Founder and CEO of EcoRatings

Jan 25, 2024 - 16:04
Budget Expectations from Ms Aditi Balbir, Co-Founder and CEO of EcoRatings

"The 2024 budget should prioritize sustainability in the infrastructure and energy sectors. Emphasizing sustainable agriculture and striving for net zero targets are also key focal points. We also expect measures including incentivizing sustainability in the retail sector, extending industry status recognition, and encouraging the adoption of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) ratings across various sectors beyond securities and banks.

To reinforce the link between sustainability and financial benefits, the budget should introduce substantial incentives, such as lower interest rates for ESG loans and grants for companies compliant with ESG standards.

This approach will establish a direct correlation between sustainability efforts and financial advantages. Furthermore, the budget should also envision the mandatory adoption of comprehensive compliances, such as the Business Responsibility and Sustainability Report (BRSR), for all companies. Additionally, the introduction of product-level ratings to enhance transparency, providing clearer insights into ESG parameters."

As a women entrepreneur, Aditi's expectations are as follows -

"In India, there are currently only three diversity-focused funds—AWE, She Capital, and Arise—each facing the challenge of relatively small fund sizes. To effectively advance the agenda of women entrepreneurship, the upcoming budget must prioritize and allocate substantial resources to support their access to capital. Specifically, there is a pressing need for increased equity-based funding.

The government should focus on allocating funds for risk capital rather than relying solely on loan-based strategies. Many female entrepreneurs often discover that they are ineligible for existing schemes, emphasizing the necessity for a more inclusive and accessible financial ecosystem.

Therefore, the ask in the upcoming budget is pretty straightforward: the budget should allocate more capital to diversity-focused funds, acknowledging the pivotal role women entrepreneurs play in fostering a more equitable business landscape in India."

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