Jaitley says govt not bound to a timeline on GST
NEW DELHI: FinanceministerArun JaitleyonFridayrefusedto“bind” himself to a timeline on the goods and services tax (GST), raising concerns that he wasn’t as optimistic about implementing it by September 2017.
“(But) we are trying to implement it as fast as possible. I think Iammakingreasonableheadway,” he told mediapersons at the end of the seventh GST Council meeting on Friday. It is believed that differences between the central government and the states over compensation and dual control may be denting Jaitley’s confidence on implementing the new indirect tax by September.
The two-day meeting of the GST council, the highest decisionmaking body of the proposed tax with Jaitley as its head and all state finance ministers as members, saw the emergence of a consensus on two important legislations required to be passed by the Centre and the states – the CGST and SGST. While CGST is the tax imposed by the central government on the intra-state supply of goods and services, SGST is charged by states.
Since both the legislations have beenapprovedbytheGSTcouncil, theywillnowbetabledbeforestate assemblies.
The council also discussed the GST compensation law, which will be vetted by the law ministry before getting the council’s final approval. Though it was already discussed and agreed upon, the demonetisation initiative has reportedly spurred the states to demand changes in the law – including bi-monthly payment of compensation instead of quarterly.