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Budget 2024: Economists Propose 'Robot Tax' For AI-Impacted Jobs

Economists discussed the upcoming Budget with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, covering growth, fiscal policy, investment, private sector involvement, food inflation, debt, and the impact of AI on employment, proposing a “robot tax” for reskilling displaced workers. The Finance Minister discussed key areas like boosting private investment, job creation, fiscal responsibility, debt management, and addressing food […]

Budget 2024: Economists Propose 'Robot Tax' For AI-Impacted Jobs
Budget 2024: Economists Propose 'Robot Tax' For AI-Impacted Jobs

Economists discussed the upcoming Budget with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, covering growth, fiscal policy, investment, private sector involvement, food inflation, debt, and the impact of AI on employment, proposing a “robot tax” for reskilling displaced workers.

The Finance Minister discussed key areas like boosting private investment, job creation, fiscal responsibility, debt management, and addressing food inflation. They also touched on the growing role of artificial intelligence (AI) and its impact on jobs. An economist proposed a “robot tax” to support retraining and aiding workers affected by AI-related job changes.

The call for a “robot tax” echoes an IMF paper cautioning about potential job losses despite AI’s overall benefits. While it doesn’t recommend such a tax, it stresses the urgency of revisiting labor policies and social protections amid technological shifts.

The IMF paper recommended prioritizing skills training, expanding unemployment and wage insurance, and reassessing corporate tax systems to encourage automation investment.

IMF’s Gita Gopinath highlights AI’s major challenge for developing nations due to limited social safety nets.

She said, “If you look at the fraction of young people who are neither in school nor working or in any kind of training, that number is much higher than in advanced economies. This means that their ability to either benefit from the transition or adapt to the transition is going to be more difficult. These are areas where developing countries will have to invest more in trying to provide a stronger digital infrastructure, more education, and training so that they can also benefit from this technology.”

Economists highlight AI’s potential for productivity gains and new job creation, urging government readiness for associated challenges. AI-related measures may feature in the Economic Survey preceding the upcoming Union Budget, though their inclusion in the Budget itself remains uncertain.

Economists and the finance minister are discussing how to balance tech progress with economic stability and social welfare. They’re focusing on strategic planning for AI’s impact on jobs and overall economic policies.

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AI-Impacted JobsBudget 2024Economists Propose 'Robot Tax'TDGThe Daily Guardian