GST roll-out uncertainty hits Budget 2017 calculations

The Economics Times, Jan 14, 2017

NEW DELHI: Uncertainty over the date of the goods and services tax (GST) roll-out is posing a dilemma for finance mandarins as they finalise this year’s budget.

The original expectation was that the budget would not touch upon excise duties and service tax as they would be rolled into the multiple-rates GST structure, which was to come into being from April 1, 2017.

But with hopes of meeting the April 1 deadline receding, the government will have to quickly take a call on whether it will rejig indirect taxes in the budget to prepare for the launch of GST or leave them as they are till the new regime comes into force.

The final decision could have ramifications on revenue estimates and collections for the next fiscal year as well as the levies imposed on different products and services. According to the GST constitutional amendment passed by Parliament last year, the current indirect tax regime will lapse by September 17.

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