'GST to be simplified in phased manner'

MP Nalin Kumar Kateel said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has decided to simplify Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the second phase of the reforms in GST will be announced shortly.

He was speaking at a discussion on the pros and cons of GST, at Canara High School hall in Mangaluru on Saturday. Though the prime minister wanted to announce an overhaul of the GST rate structure after October 13, it was decided that an early announcement would be best, he added.

The MPs have been directed to collect public opinion on the implementation of reforms announced in the GST. The prime minister wants to bring in reforms in taxation based on the public opinion, he said.

Chartered accountant Jagannath Kamath said the reduction in tax rates on 27 items, relief from filing monthly tax returns for small and medium businesses will benefit the small traders. Hurdles are common when a new law is implemented and it is a challenge to overcome such hurdles, he said.

CREDAI president D B Mehta said that the implementation of GST and Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act (RERA) has affected the real estate business. Earlier, the state government was levying a fee on immovable property business. Now, the centre is levying a similar tax, which is against the constitution.

“The construction of new buildings has come to a standstill with the implementation of GST and RERA. All the rules that have been affecting real estate business should be dropped”, he added.

KCCI president Vathika Pai said the concession extended to small traders should be extended for the large traders as well and there is a need to simplify the process of filing tax returns.

Canara Small Industries Association president Gaurav Hegde said the system of filing tax returns under VAT in Karnataka was simpler. A similar procedure should be adopted in GST.

There is a need to bring in changes in the GST software to benefit small entrepreneurs, added Hegde.

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