Central and state govts to hold 50% stake each in GST Network: Arun Jaitley

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The GST Council decided that the 51% stake in GSTN held by private entities should be taken over by the government, and eventually the central government should hold 50% in the network, and the states should hold the remaining 50% collectively

 Post the 27th Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meet on Friday, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the Council has agreed to change the ownership structure of the Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN).

“A very important item on the agenda was the change in the ownership structure of the GSTN. The original structure of GSTN was that 49% was held by the government, out of which 24.5% was held by the central government and 24.5% was held by the state government. The balance 51% was held by some other entities. I had made a suggestion some few weeks ago that this amount should be, that this shareholding of 51% should be taken over by purchase by the government and divided equally between the states and the centre,” said finance minister Arun Jaitley while addressing the media.

 “The Council discussed this proposal at length. There was a very detailed discussion on this item and it was agreed that the 51% held by these private entities should be taken over by the government and eventually the central government should hold 50% and the state governments will hold 50% collectively,” he added.

Further, Jaitley said that the collective share of the state governments will be divided on a pro-rata basis.

“The collective share of the state governments will be pro-rata divided amongst the states in accordance with their GST ratios. While doing so, the Council also recommended that the GSTN will continue to employ people contractually and have the flexibility to get the best talent on the best terms from the market considering the wide range of the width of the activities of the GSTN itself,” he concluded.

Jaitley also added that there was a detailed discussion on the first year’s revenue collection.

“By and large members expressed satisfaction over revenue growth. However, there is a need for expansion because post April 1, the base year of 2015-16, there will be a further 14% increase as far as the State Goods and Services Tax (SGST) is concerned and therefore the protected revenue of the states because of this 14% increase will also increase,” he said.

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