Finance Ministry asks officers to guide taxpayers on Budget proposals

New Delhi (IANS) The Finance Ministry has sent out informative guide on various indirect tax proposals in the Union Budget to senior field officers for implementation.

In a letter to Principal Chief Commissioner, Chief Commissioner and Principal Commissioner, the revenue department has advised them to guide trade and businesses and educate them on change in custom duties on various items.

It has also asked them to give their views and feedback on various proposals.

"I may request that all possible efforts be made to guide the taxpayers by holding interactive sessions/seminars for their (trade and businesses) benefits," G.D. Lohani, Joint Secretary (Tax Research Unit-I) wrote soon after the Budget presentation on July 5.

Presenting her maiden Budget, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman proposed to raise duties on many items other than diesel, petrol and gold. The new rate in most cases would kick in immediately.

"In order to provide domestic industry a level playing field, basic customs duty is being increased on items such as cashew kernels, PVC, Vinyl flooring, tiles, metalfittings, mountings for furniture, auto parts, certain kinds of synthetic rubbers, marble slabs, optical fibre cable, CCTV camera, IP camera, digital and network video recorders etc," Sitharaman said on Friday.

Excise duty on tobacco products and crude petroleum has also been imposed. The Budget imposed 10 per cent import duty on newsprint and 5 per cent import duty on printed books.

Custom duty on gold and other precious metals has been raised from 10 per cent to 12.5 per cent.

In a bid to promote local manufacturing, the Finance Minister proposed a cut in customs duty on certain raw materials and capital goods.

Apart from change in the duties, the Budget has made enabling provisions to create national appellate Authority for Advance Rulings to hear appeals against conflicting advance rulings given by the Appellate Authorities of two or more states.

The Budget also seeks to amend Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 for facilitating trade and improving compliance as per the decisions of the GST Council. These changes will come into effect from a notified date.

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