Wellness Franchise Opportunities

Wellness IndustryFeb, 04 2017

Budget 2017 proves beneficial for the wellness industry

As expected, Union Budget 2017 turned out to be a boon for the health and wellness industry because the central government took special care of the sector this time.

By Vikas Jain

The very mention of union budget focuses attention towards railway SOPS, infrastructure development, agriculture schemes, energy reforms, changes in financial sector etc., but rarely wellness industry is given its due credit. However, the trend seems to be changing and the Union Budget 2017 stands a testimony to this fact.

This year’s budget has provided a booster shot to the health and wellness industry in the country on the back of Indians getting more health conscious and the government realising the fact that a only a healthy nation can lead to a healthy growth.

Budget 2017: Health and wellness industry has all the reasons to smile
As expected, Union Budget 2017 turned out to be a boon for the health and wellness industry because the central government took special care of the sector this time. Here is what the Union Budget 2017 gifted the health and wellness industry:

  • 1.Government has allocated Rs 48,853 crore for health and family welfare for the year 2017-18.
  • 2.In order to increase the number of doctors in secondary and tertiary care, the government has committed to structural reforms in health and medicare sector.
  • 3.The government also plans to remodel the Drug and Cosmetic Act to ensure greater access to critical generic drugs at reasonable prices.
  • 4.Promises are also made to eradicate Leprosy, Kala Azar, Filaria and Tuberculosis completely by 2025.
  • 5.Government even plans to transform 1.5 lakh health centres to health and wellness centres to ensure quality care for citizens.
  • 6.Even plans to setup AIIMS at Jharkhand and Gujarat respectively are a step in the direction of giving a boost to the health and wellness sector.
  • 7.The Finance Minister also stated that the government will encourage several reputed hospitals across the country to start courses.
  • 8.Last but not the least, one of the biggest highlights for the healthcare space this time was the focus on new rules regarding medical devices, aimed at attracting investment in the sector and ensuring the reduced cost of devices.

Other measures to boost health and wellness sector
Not only the Union Budget 2017 has favoured the health and wellness sector, but the focus on skill development by the government is seen to be another factor giving a boost to the health and wellness industry in the country because the fitness industry demands high quality professionals all the time. So, in future, the wellness industry which is currently seeing lack of trained professionals will be better equipped with the knowledgeable man power to correctly guide the customers.

What more? The Goods and Services Tax (GST) which will be introduced in future will also affect the industry positively. The rollout of GST will not only reduce the overall tax implication on the wellness industry, but it will also reduce the involvement of various government authorities and laws, thus, giving more leg space to the sector to expand at a rapid pace. In fact, seamless movement of goods across inter-state borders will definitely lead to better efficiency in the segment. Also, fitness centers would be able to claim the input tax paid on fitness equipment. Thus, while GST will be a blessing in disguise for every industry, the fitness sector will see more sheen in their balance sheets due to reduction of non-operational expenses, which will then move southwards.

Bright future ahead for health and wellness industry
Health and wellness industry is poised to grow rapidly at CAGR of 12 per cent in next 5 years and to 1.5 trillion market size by 2019-20. Given the present scenario i.e., growing awareness about health and fitness, escalating healthcare needs and sharp rise in critical and lifestyle disorders, there will be more demands put on the wellness industry. On the back of this, the industry had lot of hopes from the Union Budget 2017 i.e., tax exemptions for setup of new health/wellness clinics, availability of quality medicare at affordable prices etc. Well, much to the health and wellness industry’s delight, most of their wishes were fulfilled.

Thus, with the number of measures taken by the government, due credit given in the Union Budget 2017 and measures taken by the industry itself, the health and wellness industry in the country is expected to see a bright future ahead.

This article has been authored by Vikas Jain, MD, Anytime Fitness

Related: From Ayurveda to Beauty, innovation is the buzz word in the industry

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