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Call for awareness about GST
Staff Reporter
 GUWAHATI, Feb 23 - The MSME-DI under the Ministry of MSME, in association with the Federation of Industry & Commerce of North Eastern Region (FINER,) organised a seminar on Goods and Services Tax (GST), at the NEDFi Convention Centre here on Wednesday.

The main objective of the seminar was to enlighten the participants on the implementation and application of the Goods and Service Tax (GST) as well as its impact on business sectors in the country. The main topic of the seminar was ‘Procedural Aspect of GST, Transitional Provisions, Migration and Regularization of Registration and Returns and Tax Payments’.

Speaking as the chief guest, Ravi Capoor, Additional Chief Secretary, Industries & Commerce, Government of Assam, urged the industry associations in the State to make people in the districts and villages aware of GST, which he said is an all-encompassing tax aimed at simplifying the structure as against the current multiplicity of taxes.

“The GST is one of the most challenging reforms across the globe. Once the system is in place, as citizens, we will begin to see its benefits which will be at the expense of people who are not paying tax. Globally, we have seen some turbulence during its implementation, but it has been seen that the national GDP goes up by 1.7 to 2 per cent following introduction of the GST. The process will take time – at least one and a half years to normalise,” he said.

Capoor also urged industry chambers and the MSME department to engage master trainers so that traders in the last block are aware of GST and its procedures. “The outreach has to be done with the help of the industry,” he said.

He said there would be issues in regard to excise duty exemptions. “But in regard to VAT, the State government will have to see that a separate fund is created so that we can move to a refund mode from exemption mode,” he added.

Earlier, FINER president Pabitra Buragohain welcomed the dignitaries and guests to the seminar.

Terming GST as a path-breaking reform, guest of honour Anurag Goel, Commissioner, Taxes, Govt of Assam said it is pertinent for dealers to activate their GST accounts by March 15 in order to be registered under the regime in time.

M Shreenivasulu, Director, MSME-DI, Government of India, delivered the keynote address.

Delivering an address during the technical session later, advocate Shailesh P Sheth from Mumbai threw light on global experience of GST, procedural aspects of GST, general provisions, transitional provisions, migration and regularisation of registration and returns and tax payments.

Sheth, who has over 25 years’ experience in consulting, advisory and litigation practice in the field of Indirect Tax Laws, also gave an insight into the challenges of Dual GST.

Various development organisations and entrepreneurs, trade and industry associations, NGOs, community organisations, bankers, financial organisations and industry captains took part in the seminar. The programme ended with a vote of thanks by Indrani Chaudhury, deputy director general, FINER.

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