‘GST has largely achieved its aim’

The Goods and Services Tax (GST), introduced across the country, has largely achieved its intended objectives, said Jane K. Nathaniel, Commissioner (Appeals), Central GST and Central Excise Commissionerate, Coimbatore, here on Sunday.

Speaking at the GST Day celebration organised here by Central GST and Central Excise Commissionerate of Madurai to mark the first anniversary of launching GST, she said the key objectives of introducing GST were to expand the tax base, reduce tax rates, improve ease of doing business, cut down the cost of tax collection, and seamless flow of input tax credit.

Stating that the country had done largely well on all these fronts, she pointed out that tax base had increased by around 15 % as per data provided by the Chief Economic Advisor.

Similarly, the tax rate of nearly 200 items had been reduced by the GST Council and the number of items that were in the 28 % tax slab reduced from 178 to 50.

Ease of doing business and transparency had improved considerably with the introduction of GST. “Of course, there are some glitches, primarily with the GST Network and the issues in filing tax returns. However, they have been addressed to a large extent now,” she said.

R. Saravanakumar, Commissioner of GST and Central Excise (Madurai Commissionerate), said that the number of tax return filers from the nine districts in Madurai Commissionerate had gone up from 11,000 last year to 33,000 this year.

“Importantly, the number of returns filed have increased from just 25,000 last year to 2,25,000 this year,” he added. He also pointed out that 28,000 new tax payer registrations had happened in the last nine months in Madurai Commissionerate.

Pointing out that the key apprehension about GST was that the major manufacturing States would lose out on tax revenue, he said that this had been proven wrong since States such as Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra have recorded considerable increase.

He also appreciated the tremendous role played by thousands of employees from the department across the country for making this ‘historical’ transformation possible.

N. Jegatheesan, president, Tamil Nadu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that GST had considerably improved the ease of doing business, particularly small and medium scale industries.

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