GST a monumental reform, hit growth only for 2 quarters: FM
MUMBAI: The GST implementation was a "monumental reform" which had a disruptionist impact on growth only for two quarters, Union finance minister Arun Jaitley said on Sunday, hitting out at "critics and cynics" who blame it for hurting the GDP expansion.
The remarks come a day after former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan blamed the indirect taxation reform for derailing India's growth story. Jaitley did not name Rajan directly.
"You will always have critics and cynics who will come up and say it (GST) slowed down India's growth," Jaitley said, speaking at state-run Union Bank of India's 100th-anniversary celebrations event here over a video link.
The finance minister said that after suffering for two quarters, growth increased to 7 per cent, then to 7.7 per cent and went up till 8.2 per cent last quarter and pointed out that this is much higher than the 5-6 per cent expansion achieved between 2012-14.
Jaitley also said there is a need to bring down non-performing assets (NPAs) in the banking system to strengthen the banking system and support growth.
The strength of the banking system has to be improved so that liquidity in markets is maintained, Jaitley said.