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India Extends Life Of High-Level Tax Committee

by Mary Swire,, Hong Kong

13 November 2015

The Indian Government has allowed a high-level committee tasked with improving Indian tax laws more time to discuss further changes with trade and industry.

The high-level committee was first announced by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley as part of the 2014/15 Budget and was officially constituted on November 26, 2014. The committee is chaired by Dr. Ashok Lahiri, former chief economic adviser to the Ministry of Finance and its term was initially set to run for one year. However, the Ministry announced on November 12 that the committee will remain active for another year.

As well as interacting with business taxpayers, the committee's remit includes drawing up recommendations for the Central Board of Direct Taxes and the Central Board of Excise and Customs on areas where tax rules can be improved. The tax authorities are then required to issue clarifications within two months from the date of receipt of the recommendations.

The high-level committee is not to be confused with a separate committee constituted by the Government last month to explore how disputes between corporate taxpayers and the tax authority can be reduced and the overall tax framework improved. Under its terms of reference, that committee is charged with identifying provisions and phrases in the Income Tax Act 1961 that are leading to litigation due to differing interpretations. It will also propose changes aimed at simplifying tax compliance and bringing about more legal certainty, but without "substantially" impacting on the tax base or tax revenue.

TAGS: compliance | Finance | tax | business | tax compliance | India | law | budget | corporation tax | tax authority | trade | Tax

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