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Tuesday, 30 May, 2017, 16 : 00 PM [IST]

No room for revising GST rates: CBEC

“There is no room for revising Goods and Services Tax (GST) rates fixed on various goods and services,” said Vanaja Sarna, Chairperson, Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), according to The Hindu Business Line. “The GST Council is meeting on June 3 to fix rates for goods which have been left out. Revision of rates may come up, but chances of that happening are remote,” she told reporters on the sidelines of National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics (NACIN) facility inauguration in Bengaluru.

Acknowledging that CBEC is getting representations, Sarna said, “We have got and keep getting numerous representations from industries and businesses. The Governing Council will take the final decision when it meets on June 3.”

She further said, “At this stage, it will be very difficult to say if the Council will actually reopen any of the rates because of the time factor involved in bringing out the GST. One must remember, if you open up any of these, then there will be no stop to revisionary demands.”

Sarna said even though an anti-profiteering agency has not been set up to curb industry taking undue advantage to create arbitrage before the rollout of GST on July 1, the government will have the rights to question arbitrary hikes in prices.

“The anti-profiteering agency is yet to be set up, but we will have all the rights to question the industry against hiking prices arbitrarily,” she said.

Earlier in the day, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, speaking after inaugurating the National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics (NACIN) facility, said “GST regime will make India more tax-complaint society.”

Training academies like NACIN are crucial for a tax-complaint society as it forges a proper co-ordination between taxation authorities (Centre and state governments) and the tax payer. The amalgamation of various indirect taxes is itself a monumental taxation change, which requires officials to upgrade their skills and knowledge, Jaitley said. (Source: The Hindu Business Line)
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