Ministerial committee urges reduction in central sales tax

May 5th, 2008 - 8:47 pm ICT by admin  

Thiruvananthapuram, May 5 (IANS) A committee of state finance ministers Monday asked the central government to reduce the central sales tax (CST) from three to two percent. After a day-long meeting of the empowered committee of state finance ministers here, West Bengal Finance Minister Asim Das Gupta told media persons that CST was in the process of being phased out since April 1, 2007.

“It was brought down from four to three percent last April and this year there were some issues with respect to states like Maharashtra and West Bengal. After discussions today, a formula will be submitted to the central finance minister of the manner in which the revenue loss to the states on account of this reduction can be taken care of,” said Das Gupta.

Once this is accepted, the CST will come down to two percent.

Later, Kerala Finance Minister Thomas Isaac said the duty on aviation fuel that was brought down from 26 percent to four percent in his last budget, would be revoked soon.

“The duty cut was done so as to enable foreign airlines operating in Kerala to bring down the air fares. Instead, the fares have gone up. The chief minister is calling a meeting to discuss this soon,” said Isaac.

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