Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman sought to alleviate concerns raised by global firms regarding 'tax certainty' within the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime. Speaking on Monday, she emphasized the progress made by the Constitutional body of the GST Council in implementing the 'One Nation, One Tax' principle, acknowledging that while teething problems existed, efforts were underway to address lingering issues from before the GST's introduction in 2017.
Comfort in 'One Nation, One Tax' Principle
FM Sitharaman highlighted the significant strides made by the GST Council in grounding the 'One Nation, One Tax' principle. Despite initial challenges, the Constitutional body has played a pivotal role in bringing about comfort in the GST framework.
Resolution of Teething Problems
The Finance Minister acknowledged that certain issues from the pre-GST era were still being addressed, with some cases in the courts. She reassured that these matters were in the process of being ironed out, demonstrating the government's commitment to resolving past concerns.
Tax Authorities' Conscious Approach
FM Sitharaman emphasized that tax authorities were conscious of adhering to allotted timeframes, leading to the issuance of notices. She clarified that these notices were a result of the ongoing transition from uncertainty to certainty, and responses from businesses were being considered.
The Finance Minister candidly stated that the nation was currently in a transitional stage. While GST was already operational, certain aspects were still in the process of being sorted out. This acknowledgment reflects the government's commitment to refining and optimizing the GST system.
Responding to a question from Deloitte India chairperson Shefali Goradia about assuring the international community regarding tax certainty in India, Minister Sitharaman highlighted the ongoing efforts to provide a stable and predictable tax environment. She assured that the government was actively working to address concerns raised by global firms, acknowledging that uncertainties persisted but were gradually being resolved.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's reassurances regarding the GST regime showcase the government's commitment to navigating from uncertainty to certainty. The acknowledgment of challenges and the ongoing efforts to address them demonstrates a transparent approach in ensuring tax certainty. As the nation transitions through this phase, the Finance Minister's comments provide insights into the government's strategy for fostering a stable and predictable tax environment, particularly crucial for global firms operating within India.