If revenue increases, then GST on more items will be slashed says Piyush Goyal

Last Updated: Thu, Aug 09, 2018 19:56 hrs
India's Power Minister Goyal speaks during the India Economic Summit 2014  at the World Economic Forum in New Delhi

On Thursday, interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal said that the government may revise GST rates on more items if the revenue and the compliance rate increases. He was also confident that the rates would be brought down in the event the economy formalises.

"GST Council has reduced rates on many items and services in the last round. We want the consumer to be burdened less by indirect tax," he said while addressing the Lok Sabha.

Goyal was speaking in the Lok Sabha after moving four bills seeking to amend the Goods and Services Tax (GST) laws for consideration and passage. The bills were Central GST (Amendment) Bill, Integrated GST (Amendment) Bill, GST (Compensation to States) Amendment Bill and Union Territory GST (Amendment) Bill.

In the last year alone, the minister highlighted, the GST Council had reduced rates on 384 items and 68 services. 186 items and 99 services were exempted from GST. "Also sanitary pads were exempted from the GST," he said.

He also pointed out that the government was able to collect GST in line with the country's fiscal deficit target. Referring to the recent growth forecast about India by the IMF, he said "I think India's economic growth will be better than this forecast."

India is projected to clock an economic growth of 7.5 per cent in the 2019-2020 fiscal year on strengthening of investment and robust private consumption, the IMF had said in its latest report. Although according to a latest report, the IMF suggested India to adopt a simpler rate structure to preserve revenue neutrality.

The Washington based agency said the GST was a milestone reform, but conceded that a dual rate structure with a low standard rate and an additional higher rate on select items can be progressive and preserve revenue neutrality.

Here are the monthly collections so far.

With agency inputs