Days after the issue of tax notices to foreign investors rocked the businesses, finance minister Arun Jaitley stuck to his stand, saying India is not aspiring to be a tax haven. At the same time, he said every tax demand could not be equated with an act of “tax terrorism” by the government.
“Legitimate taxes must be paid and should not be perceived as ‘tax terrorism’, said Arun Jaitley at the National Conference and Annual Session of the Confederation of Indian Industry with the theme ‘Building India: A Shared Responsibility’, in New Delhi.
His justification for the tax notices was that while pursuing tax-related cases, the fairness of the Government has been partly misunderstood.
The aim of the Government, he said, is to create a conducive business environment by addressing the challenges faced, especially with respect to taxation, the Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation and Resettlement bill, and corruption.
Reflecting on the last ten months, Jaitley said that in order to address the most important challenge of restoring India’s credibility, the Government decided to open up the economy even further and raised the FDI limit across several sectors.
However, while that would enable investments, it was critically important to create a conducive business environment, with a special focus on ease of doing business.
To facilitate ease of doing business, the Government is focusing on tax reforms with the aim of pushing for the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and lowering the corporate tax rate.