New Delhi, Sep 28: CCEA today cleared a Rs 2,256 crore IT project Saksham of the Central Board of Excise and Customs, which will help integrate CBEC's system with the GST network before the rollout in April next year.
The implementation strategy for the project will be to ensure readiness of CBEC's IT framework by April, 1, 2017, when GST is to be introduced, an official statement read.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved Project Saksham, a New Indirect Tax Network (Systems Integration) of CBEC.
"The total project cost involved is Rs 2,256 crore, which will be incurred over seven years," the statement said, adding that the upgrade of the IT systems will be carried out while keeping the existing taxpayer services running.
Project Saksham will help in implementation of goods and services tax (GST), extension of the Indian Customs Single Window Interface for Facilitating Trade (SWIFT) and other taxpayer-friendly initiatives under Digital India and Ease of Doing Business of CBEC.
"All taxpayers/importers/exporters/dealers under various indirect tax laws administered by CBEC -- presently about 36 lakh -- are likely to go up to over 65 lakh after introduction of GST," the statement added.
CBEC's IT structure needs to integrate with the Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN) for processing of registration, payment and returns data sent to CBEC as well as act as a front-end for other modules like audit, appeal and investigation.
There is no overlap in the GST-related systems of CBEC and GSTN, the statement said.
"This IT infrastructure is also urgently required for continuation of CBEC's e-services in Customs, central excise and service tax, implementation of taxpayer services such as scanned document upload facility, extension of Indian Customs SWIFT initiative and integration with government initiatives such as e-nivesh, e-taal and e-sign," the statement added.
The government plans to roll out the new indirect tax regime GST from April 1, 2017, which will subsume excise, service tax and a clutch of other local levies.