Consumers not complaining about GST, only some traders are: Arun Jaitley

"For any economic reform, it is essential that direction of the government is right. No half-baked measures can result in reform. Government which blinks is never able to reform," Jaitley said

By: PTI | New Delhi | Published:July 1, 2017 10:04 pm
Arun Jaitley, GST, Goods and Services Tax, Jaitley on GST, GST tax rate scheme, consumers on GST, traders on GST, indian express news Finance Minister Arun Jaitley (PTI/File)

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday wondered why certain traders are complaining about GST rates when the ultimate burden of taxation will fall on consumers. Jaitley said the consumers are not complaining about Goods and Services Tax (GST) because the government has kept the rates at reasonable levels. “In the country nowhere the consumer is complaining because we have tried to make reasonable the basket of taxation. So why are one or two traders complaining? Traders don’t have to pay tax, consumers have to,” he said. The minister further said nobody can claim that one has the fundamental right of not paying taxes. The society has gotten used to the mindset that not paying taxes is not a wrong thing, he said.

“This mindset needs to be changed and a new normal has to be created. If India has to move from developing economy to developed economy then the attitude, mindset of people… it is about time that the mindset also became a mindset of a developed economy,” Jaitley said at an event in New Delhi. He said many “tough decisions” have been taken by the government which helped restore credibility of the economy.

“For any economic reform, it is essential that direction of the government is right. No half-baked measures can result in reform. Government which blinks is never able to reform,” Jaitley said. Rejecting suggestions of a single or dual GST rate, he said it can be done in the future and 12 and 18 per cent GST rates can converge into a single figure. But today if we have 15 per cent single rate then zero-rated food items which are used by poor people would become costlier, he said, adding there should be equity in taxation policy.

The GST, which came into effect from Saturday, has a four-tier rate structure — 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent. Besides, certain essential commodities are zero-rated. Jaitley said GST is a collective decision of the nation and every state government has supported it. “There is no need to worry, some people are worried and hence they are distancing. This a collective decision of the nation, and I believe this will surely benefit the nation. Whenever there is a change, there are technology based troubles,” he said.

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  1. R
    ram
    Jul 2, 2017 at 2:09 pm
    Mr. Jaitley: No inflation...but there will be rise in goods price bills.
    Reply
  2. V
    Vijay Kaul
    Jul 2, 2017 at 2:46 am
    Absolutely untrue, figment of your imagination Mr.Jaitley
    Reply
  3. A
    Anoop
    Jul 2, 2017 at 12:09 am
    The traders will understand the complexities better than the consumer. It's time to object to all these measures taken which create confusion and chaos with no proper outcome for eg demonetisation. Why was GST not applied to petrol pumps?
    Reply
  4. M
    mark
    Jul 1, 2017 at 10:44 pm
    "why certain traders are complaining about GST rates when the ultimate burden of taxation will fall on consumers" possibly because they think their customers will buy less. GST is actually French invention (under the acronym VAT/TVA), some 40 years back, that spread to the rest of Europe, it's about: - 1 - having the poor also paying taxes (this is called "democratic" or "nobody can claim that one has the fundamental right of not paying taxes" as M. Jaitley puts it) so possibly putting less fiscal pressure on the rich - 2 - putting the burden of collecting taxes on traders and companies. So possibly giving some relief to bureaucrats? by French experience, the end result is an evergrowing burden on companies, new taxes will always appear, only to feed an evergrowing state and make life more expensive to the common man
    Reply