In a recent review meeting with the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs (CBIC), Union Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman discussed significant progress in revenue achievement and set new directions for the organization. Topics covered in the meeting included trade facilitation, taxpayer services, grievance redressal and employee welfare. The minister emphasized the importance of enhancing taxpayer services and implementing technology-based solutions to combat tax frauds.
Comprehensive Review: FM & CBIC Meeting
Union Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman recently chaired a review meeting with the Central Board of Indirect Taxes & Customs (CBIC). The meeting, attended by the Revenue Secretary, Chairman and Members of the CBIC, covered a wide range of topics including trade facilitation, taxpayer services and grievance redressal for trade.
Focus on Improving Taxpayer Services
The Finance Minister emphasized the importance of continuously enhancing taxpayer services. She urged CBIC to organize interactions with members of trade and industry in each Zone, who are part of the GST ecosystem, in order to identify issues and suggestions for redressal. In addition, Smt Sitharaman called for a feedback system on grievances redressed to improve the quality of redressal.
Impressive Revenue Achievements (FY 2022-23)
During the meeting, the Finance Minister was informed of the final revenue achievement in total Indirect Tax collections for FY 2022-23, amounting to Rs 13.82 lakh crore (compared to Rs 12.89 Lakh Crore in FY 2021-22). On the GST front, the average gross monthly collection for FY 2022-23 reached Rs 1.51 lakh crore, with monthly GST revenue collections exceeding Rs 1.4 lakh crore for 12 consecutive months.
New Directives: GST Return Scrutiny Automation
Smt Sitharaman directed CBIC to introduce automated GST return scrutiny by next week and implement an action plan to increase the taxpayer base through enhanced use of technology. In order to combat fake billing/Input Tax Credit (ITC) fraud, she requested CBIC to undertake a comprehensive root cause analysis by studying existing cases and providing technology-based solutions to address the issue and prevent its recurrence.
Focus on Employee Welfare and Capacity Building
The Finance Minister also advised CBIC to take measures for employee welfare, including cadre restructuring, capacity building, timely promotions and effective action in disciplinary matters. The CBIC briefed Smt Sitharaman on activities carried out under the Customs Cooperation Fund (CCF) India, which supports capacity building initiatives among World Customs Organisation (WCO) members.
The comprehensive review meeting with CBIC highlights the Union Finance Minister’s commitment to improving taxpayer services and addressing critical issues in the GST ecosystem. With new directives for automation and an action plan to increase the taxpayer base, the government aims to continue the growth trajectory in Indirect Tax collections while strengthening employee welfare and capacity building initiatives.