The industry can play a significant role in the smooth implementation of Goods and Service Tax (GST) by April 2017. Almost a unanimous consensus has been already achieved among the states and different stakeholders, so a good result is awaited, said Bijoy Kumar, Principal Commissioner, Service Tax (Kolkata).
“The whole process entails amalgamation of the Central and state taxation system into a simpler one. Since GST seeks to be a transparent system driven by technology, industry has a larger part to play. The government will require CII’s help in several areas and aspects,” said Kumar at a seminar titled ‘GST Implications – Industry Perspective, Gearing up for the Change’, organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in Kolkata on Tuesday.
Kumar believes, though it is a big challenge to integrate divergent systems into a seamless one, a new network is being devised to run GST in a 100% automated manner.
The government will conduct training programmes for employees to educate them about the new set of procedures, Kumar added.
Chandra Sekhar Ghosh, Chairman, CII Eastern Region Economic Affairs and Managing Director, CEO of Bandhan Bank said, said to make GST a hassle-free instrument in driving national competitiveness, there is a need to build a centralized registration system. States could be offered credits through the Integrated GST (IGST) mechanism. Such a system would greatly simplify ease of doing business and foster better tax compliance.
Atul Gupta, Partner (Indirect Tax), Deloitte India, however said, since the implementation of GST in India will be complicated, there is a need for a strategy to manage disputes. “A framework for conducive and healthy tax environment is imperative. So is the accountability of officers with a duty of fairness and correctness towards the taxpayers and timely clarifications on contentious matters for uniformity,” Gupta said. However, Congress has expressed its opposition to the proposed four-tier GST rate structure, mentioning it would hit hand the commoners.