New Delhi, July 17 (ANI): Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said here today that he was confident that the revenue target for the next fiscal year will be achieved and that a forum to hear the issues of group representations has been set up.
Chidambaram said that the Government has an ambitious target. " This year the Central Board on Excise and Customs has to collect 5, 63, 386 crore as against last year's collection of 4, 74,395 crore marking an increase of about 19 percent. In my view, this is eminently achievable", said Chidambaram.
Chidambaram pointed out that even though the country grew at 5 percent this year, collections were 21 percent above those of 2011-2012. Accordingly, he said, he was confident that the 19 percent appreciation was a realistic one.
"So, this year, with the economy expected to grow certainly above 5 percent, we will achieve our target", he said addressing the media after the annual meeting of the Chief Commissioners of Excise and Customs.
Admitting difficulties and setbacks in the initial months of the fiscal year, Chidambaram said that one of the problems was that of people getting used to the idea of paying service tax.
"People are still not used to the idea of a service tax. People must get used to the idea that GDP is made up of goods and services. It will take some time. It is not surprising that non-filers and stop filers have mounted in service tax. We are targeting that", said Chidambaram.
To alleviate these problems, Chidambaram said that the One-Time Voluntary Compliance Encouragement Scheme (VCES) would be advertised on a large-scale across the country, in the next few months. The scheme would allow defaulters to come forth in a "one-time opportunity to come clean without interest and penalty".
Additonaly, the Finance Minister announced that a mechanism has been set up headed by Dr Shome, which will allow group representation hearings on tax issues. (ANI)