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GST rates need to be overhauled to reduce burden on small firms, says Revenue Secretary

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Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia has said that complete overhauling of the Goods and Services Tax rates is required to reduce the burden on small and medium businesses.

In an interview to a news agency, he said, the GST, which amalgamates more than a dozen central and state levies like excise duty, service tax and VAT, will take about a year to stabilise.

Mr Adhia said that wherever the government find there is a big burden on small and medium businesses and on the common man, it will bring them down. He said, then only there will be a better compliance, a better acceptability of GST.

Mr Adhia, however, said the overhauling would require some calculations by the fitment committee, which will decide which items need a rationalisation of the rate under the GST regime. He said, the is very keen to do it as early as possible, it depends on how much time the fitment committee takes to work on it.

He said, the committee will work on it for a month and then the GST Council will try and bring something as early as in Guwahati or later on.
The 23rd meeting of the GST Council, chaired by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and comprising of representatives of all states, will be held in Guwahati on 10th next month.

Nearly four months since its introduction, the new indirect tax threw up many issues, which the GST Council — the highest decision-making body of the new regime — has addressed through several rounds of changes.

To ease hassles facing medium and small businesses in paying taxes and filing GST returns, it has tweaked various aspects of the new indirect tax regime to make it industry-friendly. Also, the GST Council has rationalised rates on over 100 commodities and made refund process easier for exporters.

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