New Delhi: New ASSOCHAM president Sunil Kanoria on Thursday said it is time lawmakers across parties passed the Constitutional Amendment Bill on GST without further delay as it would send a strong signal to investors that India’s economy can overcome serious global and domestic challenges with political will.
He said GST can be a “Brahmastra” for the Indian economy against a very difficult global economic scenario, affected by demand slowdown, uncertain geo-political situation after the Paris terror attacks, and an unprecedented crash in vital commodities.
“GST will harmonise indirect taxes by doing away with multiplicity of taxes. It will also reduce cost of production, which will be then passed on consumers, thus lowering inflation. More striking would be the display of a political unity and the will to rise up to national cause. That will be a great positive for revival of investment, both domestic and international, something most needed at this point of difficult international times,” Kanoria said in his maiden media interaction.
Kanoria is the Vice Chairman and Managing Director of SREI Infrastructure Finance. In response to a question on the raging issue of supposed ‘intolerance,’ the new president of ASSOCHAM said, “The very fact that we are tolerating the intolerance itself is an adequate proof to say that we are a tolerant country.”
Kanoria added: Our GDP growth can rise by 1 to 1.5 percent by GST alone, going up to 9 percent by 2018-19 from the present estimated 7.3 percent if the government gives massive thrust to infrastructure development.
“The stipulation of additional one per cent duty should not be imposed and the GST should help country to make one India rather than divide India,” further said Kanoria.
He urged the principal Opposition Congress Party to rise up to the national call and support the Goods and Services Bill in the Rajya Sabha. The newly elected ASSOCHAM President requested upon the Government as well to reach out to all the political parties for a common cause.
“If the Congress Party or any other national or regional party has some specific concerns, the government should look into the same and address it as far as possible. There can always be a middle ground. Besides, the passage of the Bill would not mean casting it in stone; as the nation starts implementing the new taxation regime, some important lessons can be learnt and incorporated by subsequent changes in the law. But, if there is one thing that our nation needs from its political leadership, it is the GST,” Kanoria said.