Commerce minister to chair emerging tech focused Startup Advisory Council

Commerce minister to chair emerging tech focused Startup Advisory Council
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21 Jan, 2020

As part of its decision to set up a National Startup Advisory Council, the central government has announced that the board will be chaired by the minister of commerce and industry. 

NSAC will help the government engage with the startup ecosystem to help emerging technology companies grow.

The council will include founders, entrepreneurs and veterans who have grown and scaled companies in India, investors and representatives of incubators, accelerators and stakeholder and industry associations nominated by the government. 

These non-official members will be appointed for a period of two years.  

Ola founder Bhavish Aggarwal, Infosys co founders Nandan Nilekani and Kris Gopalakrishnan and founder of edtech unicorn Byju Raveendran are a part of the council as non-official members, according to a report by The Economic Times. 

However, a statement from the ministry said that the names will be notified later, 

Other members of the council will include nominees of the rank of joint secretary from multiple ministries and departments and will be chaired by the joint secretary of  Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT).

The statement said that the council will suggest measures to improve delivery of public services through innovation and, “..make it easier to start, operate, grow and exit businesses by reducing regulatory compliances and costs, promote ease of access to capital for startups, incentivise domestic capital for investments into startups, mobilize global capital for investments in Indian startups, keep control of startups with original promoters and provide access to global markets for Indian startups.” 

Some aspects, including retaining control of the company with original promoters, have been a subject of discussion by the Security and Exchanges Board of India as part of norms on differential voting rights Recently, Snapdeal co-founder Kunal Behl voiced his concerns on easing taxation norms for ESOPs (Employee stock ownership plan) for startup employees.

The NSAC was proposed as part of Startup Vision Document 2024 released by DPIIT in April 2019. The document also proposed ease of taxation on ESOPs for startups as well as a Rs 1000 crore fund for startups in the country.