Govt in final stages of discussions on GST: FM

SansadTV Bureau

File Photo ( PTI )

Hinting that amendments to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) may be introduced in the ensuing winter session of Parliament, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Said on Sunday that the government is in the final stages of talks with states on the issue.

“I am in the last stage of my discussion with the states on the eve of Parliament session before introducing the amendments to the GST law in Parliament,” Jaitley said at the India Global Forum meeting.

The month-long Winter Session of Parliament is scheduled to commence on November 24.

Seeking support from the opposition parties, especially Congress, in passing the key legislation, Jaitley said they should realise that the “merits of some of these actions have positive attitude towards them”.

“I do hope that my friends in the Opposition parties, particularly the principle Opposition, after a wasted opportunity when they were in government, spend a more fruitful tenure when they are in opposition,” Jaitley said.

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime aims at subsuming most of the indirect taxes at the central as well as state level. The UPA government in 2011 introduced a Constitution Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha to pave the way for introduction of GST.

The GST rollout has missed several deadlines because of lack of consensus among states over certain crucial issues on the new tax regime.

Pending since 2006, the discussion on GST Bill is stuck at a crucial stage where states have proposed to keep products such as petroleum, tobacco and alcohol out of GST ambit and had demanded the exemption list be included in the Constitutional Amendment Bill.

Jaitley hopeful of passage of Insurance Bill 
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today expressed hope that the long-pending Insurance Laws Amendment Bill, which seeks to raise the FDI cap in the sector to 49 per cent, will get the Parliament approval in the upcoming Winter Session.

“We have opened up investments in various sectors. I do hope this (Winter) session I will be able to pass the Insurance Bill,” he said at the India Global Forum meeting.

The month-long Winter Session of Parliament is scheduled to commence from November 24.