- "Total tax base itself has increased significantly": Arun Jaitley
- In future, GST will further simplify, rationalise rate structure, he said
- The Goods and Services Tax completed one year today
Union minister Arun Jaitley said today there was an increase of 18 per cent in direct taxes collection last year due to the Goods and Services Tax or GST and demonetisation. In the last four years of NDA government, there has been an increase of 1.5 per cent in overall taxes, the minister said.
"The total tax base itself has increased significantly," Mr Jaitley said. "These are the changes taking place on account of GST implementation. As tax collection goes up, capacity to rationalise rates will increase. Therefore, that capacity to rationalise will increase total volume."
This year, the first quarter shows advanced payments. The gross figure has increased by 44%, the minister said.
In future, the GST will include further "simplifying and rationalizing the rate structure" and bring more products under its ambit. "I am confident that once revenue stabilizes and the GST settles, the GST Council will look into these carefully and act judiciously, Mr Jaitley said in a tweet.
The Goods and Services Tax completes one year today. The government's flagship "one country one tax" was rolled out last year in a special midnight session in parliament.
This morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted:
I congratulate the people of India on the special occasion of GST completing 1 year.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 1, 2018
A vibrant example of cooperative federalism and a 'Team India' spirit, GST has brought a positive change in the Indian economy. #GSTForNewIndiahttps://t.co/PvZKtl2YIE
GST has brought growth, simplicity and transparency. It is:
Boosting formalisation.Enhancing productivity.
Furthering 'Ease of Doing Business.'
Benefitting small and medium enterprises. #GSTForNewIndiapic.twitter.com/IGGwUm59rB— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 1, 2018
In a series of tweets, Mr Jaitley also attacked the Congress and the UPA. "Rahul Gandhi has been advocating a single slab GST for India. It is a flawed idea. A single slab GST can function only in those countries where the entire population has a similar and a higher level of paying capacity," he tweeted.
The Congress chief has repeatedly spoken of a single slab GST, especially after fuel prices started climbing last month. His party also contended that petrol and diesel should be brought under the ambit of GST, which will bring down the prices.
Regarding petroleum prices, Mr Jaitley said, "The UPA kept petroleum products permanently outside GST. On the contrary, we brought them back into the Constitution as levyable to GST and can gradually impose the GST when the GST Council so decides. For this I would continue to make my earnest efforts with the States."