The proposed Goods and Services Tax (GST) Bill will be a game changer for India's express and courier industry, Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha said on Monday, listing GST as one of the "vectors" transforming the country's logistics sector.
"GST will change the supply chain...long lines on inter-state borders are going to go away," Sinha said at a conference here on e-commerce organised by the Express Industry Council of India that also discussed the proposed reform of India's indirect tax regime.
In reply to a question on the timeline for roll-out of the GST, he said: "The government is working with the April 2016 timeline."
The GST Bill was last month sent to a select committee of the Rajya Sabha, which will table its report in the upper house on the last day of the first week of next parliament session.
GST is seen as the key to facilitating industrial growth and improving the country's business climate. By subsuming most indirect taxes levied by the central and state governments such as excise duty, service tax, VAT and sales tax, the new regime proposes to facilitate a common market across the country, leading to economies of scale and reducing inflation through an efficient supply chain.
The passage of the bill to become a law is a lengthy process.
Being a constitution amendment bill, which was passed by the Lok Sabha, it needs to be passed by the Rajya Sabha with a two-thirds majority and then ratified by at least 15 state legislatures before being sent for the president's assent.
--Indo-Asian News Service bc/vd
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