Chennai, Jan 19:
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Monday said the government’s strategy is to rationalise taxes on non-adversarial basis and also attempt to make the budgetary proposals transparent.
Speaking at an interactive session organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) with the industrialists here, Jaitley said: “The strategy is to rationalise taxes on non-adversarial. Our attempt is to make budgetary proposals transparent. There will not be any concealed fiscal deficit.”
Referring to the recent rate cut announced by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Jaitley said the process of rate cut has started.
He said in the coming months the focus will be on investments, manufacturing and infrastructure.
According to him, competing economies are not doing better than India.
He said India is moving faster than them and with the change of general mood the agenda of the government has changed.
Stressing upon the need to rationalise the subsidies, Jaitley said he is looking at the suggestions made by the Expenditure Commission.
He also called upon major political parties to have national vision on economic policies as they have in relation with security and foreign policies.
He said parties that come to power – at the central and state levels – should have a common vision.
Coming down upon the erstwhile Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, Jaitley said the country scared away the investors by an adversarial tax policy.
He said the last decade of the UPA rule was a lost decade with the country losing track on the economic front.
According to Jaitley for economic management of a country, one needs strong political leadership where the prime minister of the country is a natural leader and has the last word.
He said the earlier government focussed on distributing what was on hand and not on increasing productivity.
Jaitley, who said people will not invest where there is corruption, later threw up his hands when a businessman asked about whether the BJP government would announce department-wise steps taken to curb corruption.
According to him the initial phase of the BJP government was to restore the credibility of the institutions.
Referring to the government’s decision to take the ordinance route on some legislations, Jaitley said it was forced to as the wisdom of the duly elected house (Lok Sabha) was being constantly questioned by the indirectly elected house (Rajya Sabha).
He said India has a great opportunity now with many of the competing economies on the down slide.
On the criticism of allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in defence manufacturing, Jaitley questioned the logic of buying nearly 70 percent of the defence needs from overseas makers while opposing domestic manufacturing with small foreign stake.
“A new sector of manufacturing (defence equipments) has opened up,” he added.
Assuring the states that their revenue would be protected after the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, Jaitley said it would make business easier and in the long run result in reduction of tax rates. (IANS)