Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal today said that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is a major transformational step. He said that the GST might lead to a situation where tax incidences would be lower.
“Under the GST regime, tax base will expand. More people will pay tax honestly. The GST experience may lead to lower tax rates in the future while tax revenue will go up,” Piyush Goyal said.
The Union Minister further said, “It is undoubtedly a historical occasion. Never ever before this (moment), nation thought of having one single tax after abolishing 17 taxes. No one thought that 29 states and the Centre would take a unanimous decision.”
However, Goyal said that the Centre could not decide on the new rates. “Only the GST Council can fix rates in the future. Finance Minister or even Prime Minister cannot decide the rate of tax on products.”
“The Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN) – the technological backbone – has come up with a simple system for filing tax returns. This is the way for honest filing of taxes. There is no other way than honesty under the new regime,” Goyal added.
“Now, the competition will not be among traders or businessmen for evading taxes but for providing quality products,” Goyal said.
WHAT ELSE PIYUSH GOYAL SAID
The GST frees traders, businessmen and entrepreneurs from the chains of olden days’ plethora of taxes. Now they can honestly pay their taxes and contribute in nation building.
Responding to a query on the Congress’ decision to boycott the Special Session of Parliament for GST launch, Goyal said, “Unfortunately, at some points of time, politics takes over economics. There might be some misunderstandings. The misunderstanding may not be in the entire party but among a couple of leaders.”
Goyal said, “If two or four parties don’t participate, it will not impact the celebration. This will rather send a wrong signal about their commitment on national issues as they (Congress) supported the GST but were now opting out of its historic launch. When we invited former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he was happy and said that he would take part in the function. But something changed since.”
He also rejected the concerns raised by Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia that GST may lead to a bigger grey market of tax evasion. Goyal said, “Manish Sisodia might have said this out of ignorance. The GST will increase tax compliance rate and reduce grey market. What Sisodia said was 360 degree opposite of reality.”