Better monitoring of indirect taxes; target to be met

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New Delhi, May 29 (UNI) Finance Minister P Chidambaram today avowed that the government will meet its target on indirect taxes for fiscal 2008-09 and said a third party information system of collating data was being devised for better monitoring of returns relating to indirect taxes.

Mr Chidambaram told newspersons here that so far returns on Value Added Tax(VAT) are used to synchronise details on indirect taxes provided by an assessee. Now the usage of elecrticity and bills relating to these will also be used in this regard.

He said the new system relating to Indirect taxes would be on the same lines of Annual Information Report (AIR) relating to Income Tax filing.

The Finance Minister was addressing a Press Conference to brief the media about the two-day 'All India Conference of Chief Commissioners and Director Generals of Customs, Excise and Service Tax,' which began this morning.

The AIR, which catalogues various expenditures by an assessee, is sometimes used to monitor Income Tax returns.

The Finance Minister exuded confidence that the targets of all heads under the Indirect Taxes, namely customs, service tax and excise would be met, notwithstanding the sluggish growth in excise duty collections.

The customs growth projected for 2008-09 is 14,4 per cent, excise growth at 8.8 per cent and service tax is slated to grow at 26.1 per cent.

"We will redouble our efforts to ensure indirect tax target is met, especially that pertaining to excise collections," he said.

As against the Budget Estimates of Rs 2,78, 013 crores for Indirect Taxes, the Revised Estimates were hiked slightly to Rs 2,78,139 crores. The actuals are of the order of Rs 2,80,738 crores, whicb is a growth of Rs 2599 crores, Mr Chidambaram said.

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