UPSC PIB Summary Analysis Jun18

GST leads to Formalization of Economy and Widening of Tax Base

  • The Goods and Service Tax (GST), has resulted in formalization of economy and consequently information flow would eventually augment not only the Indirect Tax collections but also Direct Tax collections.
  • In the past, the Centre had little data on small manufacturers and consumption because the excise was imposed only at the manufacturing stage while the States had little data on the activities of local firms outside their borders.
  • Under the GST, there will be now seamless flow of availability of common set of data to both the Centre and the States making Direct and Indirect Tax collections more effective.
  • There are early signs of tax base expansion.  Between June and July 2017, 6.6 lakh new agents, previously outside the tax net, sought GST registration. This is expected to rise consistently as the incentives for formalization increase.
  • The entire Textile chain is now brought under tax net.
  • Further, a segment of land and real estate transactions has also been brought into tax net “works contracts”, referring to housing that is being built.
  • This, in turn, would allow for greater transparency and formalization of cement, steel and other sales which earlier tended to be outside the tax net. The formalization will occur because builder will need documentation of these input purchases to claim tax credit.
  • A number of procedural changes have also been made since the roll-out of GST on 1stJuly, 2017 in order to simplify the processes. An extensive exercise was undertaken for tax payers education and facilitation by way of knowledge sharing, dissemination of information and replies to FAQs among others.

Union Home Minister calls for expediting online cybercrime reporting portal

  • Union Home Minister Shri Rajnath Singh today cautioned against the new challenges being posed by crimes in the cyberspace and called for effective measures to improve cyber security.
  • In a review meeting in the Ministry of Home Affairs, he expressed concern over the misuse of social media for illegal activities and directed to strengthen the capabilities of law enforcement agencies to be able to meet the challenges posed by it.
  • Shri Rajnath Singh appreciated the efforts made in expediting security clearance for proposals in sensitive sectors and noted that the average duration for the clearance of a proposal has come down to 53 days compared to 120 days four years ago.
  • While expressing concern over rising misuse of internet for circulating child pornography and other obscene material, the Home Minister directed to expedite the launch of online cybercrime reporting portal. This will enable affected people in States/Union Territories to lodge complaints which will be investigated by the respective law enforcement agencies and action taken for removal of such content.
  • Shri Rajnath Singh called for greater vigilance against evolving cyber threats and called for regular cyber auditing of IT infrastructure of all organisations under MHA.
  • He directed for upgradation and updation of National Information Security Policy and Guidelines (NISPG) for the government sector. He also expressed concern over financial frauds being committed on gullible public by phone call fraudsters and stressed on increasing public awareness and strengthening of institutional framework for checking such frauds.

Study report on Indian pharma exports to China

  • For India to make a strong pitch for pharma exports to China, the Department of Commerce in coordination with Embassy of India at Beijing commissioned a study on “Enhancing Indian Exports of Pharmaceutical products to China” under the Market Access Initiative Scheme (MAI) to have a proper understanding of Chinese market and to help the Indian pharma industry to evolve appropriate and focused strategy for entry of the Indian generic drugs.
  • The study examines the healthcare market, pharmaceutical market the distribution system, procurement and bidding process and the regulatory landscape in China.
  • China’s health-care sector continues to grow rapidly with spending projected to grow from $ 357 billion in 2011 to $ 1 trillion in 2020.
  • From pharmaceuticals to medical products to consumer health, China remains among the world’s most attractive markets, and by far the fastest-growing of all the large emerging ones.

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