India to meet 2008-09 indirect tax goals: Chidambaram

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New Delhi, May 29 : Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram said on Thursday that India is poised to meet its indirect tax targets for this fiscal year, although target growth in excise tax is looking formidable at the moment.

Chidambaram told reporters that the overall indirect taxes would be met but central excise collection is causing concern.

"We complement the Central Board for Excise and Customs (CBEC) achieving these targets. However these targets have been achieved by increase in customs and service tax but shortfall in central excise and therefore naturally we are concerned about the sluggish growth in central excise," said Chidambaram.

Chidambaram added that the excise growth is pegged at 8.8 per cent for this year and that at the moment seems a little formidable.

He said the target increase in service tax was 26.1 per cent for the fiscal year 2008-09 and it should be possible to meet that goal.

"I am confident that this year the department will achieve like last year the overall budget estimate target but within the overall target. I would be very happy if we achieve the target in each of the taxes, customs, excise and service tax. So we will redouble our efforts to achieve the target in central excise and we hope that we will achieve the target tax wise as well as for the whole indirect tax sector," added Chidambaram.

In an assuring tone, he said that close monitoring is being carried out for the manufacturing sector as well as other channels and the commissioners have been asked to clamp down on misuse of cenvat credit.

According to the figures in April 2008, country's indirect tax receipts for 2007-08 exceeded the annual target and were at 2.79 trillion rupees, prompting analysts to predict that the government is set to meet the budget deficit.

The Finance Minister reiterated the fact and said that the budget deficit would be met.

ANI

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