Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Thursday thanked all political parties for their cooperation and contribution in making the launch of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) possible. In a letter to the presidents of the different political parties, Jaitley said: “With the cooperation of all the political parties, the 101st Constitutional Amendment Act for Goods and Services Tax (GST) was passed by the Parliament and the same was notified on September 8, 2016.”
He said that three laws — GST, Integrated GST and Union Territories GST — have already been passed by Parliament while the State GST law has been passed by 25 states.
Jaitley further mentioned that the GST Council, in which all the states and union territories are represented, has met 15 times in the last eight months and has approved the draft laws and GST rates for all the commodities.
He said that the GST is the most important tax reform since the country’s independence and is going to substantially ease business in India, promoting new investment and contributing to overall GDP growth.
Jaitley said that GST will also help in removing the cascading effect of taxation and provide relief to the common man by leading to a reduction in prices, especially of essential consumer goods, adding that in terms of revenue growth, GST will help all the consumption states.
Highlighting the role of MPs and MLAs in creating mass awareness about the new tax law, Jaitley said: “It is important for them to understand the finer points of the new tax regime in order to explain the same to the people at large of the country.”
“If trade and industry face any difficulty during the implementation phase, the representatives of the people should be better equipped to handle the same if properly trained in this regard,” he said.
Jaitley also requested the party presidents of the different political parties to consider organising workshops and training sessions for all the parliamentarians and legislators for which the central government would be happy to provide experts.