The government is willing to look at all issues to reduce pain points in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime and will take them to the GST Council, revenue secretary Hasmukh Adhia has said.
The government is willing to look at all issues to reduce pain points in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime and will take them to the GST Council, revenue secretary Hasmukh Adhia told The Economic Timesin an interview.
Adhia added that there is scope for rationalisation in the GST regime currently in force once revenue picks up. “We should do it, but only after seeing revenue trends. Rationalisation leading to gravitation to standard rate of 18 percent can result into less classification disputes,” he said.
When asked if he was happy with the GST revenue trends, Adhia pointed out that most of the cash collection is currently coming from integrated GST (IGST). He said that IGST has to be apportioned and that the government was hopeful that over a period of time, CGST and SGST will bring in majority of the cash collections.
Addressing these concerns, Adhia said that GST is new in the economy and that the government is learning with experience. “We would also like to carry out an indepth survey to identify the difficulties and pain points on the compliance side, which are seen as a burden by the industry. The government and the GST Council would be open to the idea of reconsidering some decisions,” he said.
The revenue secretary, however, added that people should keep on mind that before GST was rolled out, they had to deal with 10 different taxes and a separate tax authority for each of those taxes.
In addition to this, Adhia was asked his take on traders’ fears that once they get into the GST system, the income tax department will open past assessments. The bureaucrat said that if such concerns were being raised, the government could look at them, but that he was unsure about whether or not an assurance can be given legally.
Speaking about the central government’s share in GST revenue, Adhia acknowledged that the share of CGST is less than that of SGST but that it was partly because people had used the transitional credit, which was larger for the central government. However, he said it was still too early to say whether the central government will lose out on revenue in the long run.