Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
25-February-2015 20:38 IST
Central Excise Day Celebrated; MoS(Finance) Shri Jayant Sinha Emphasizes that There is Urgent Need to Enhance the Tax to GDP Ratio in India as Well as Expanding the Tax Base and Improving the Tax Compliance;

Exhorted the Officers to Work on Innovative Ideas to Facilitate Starting and Doing a Business

The Minister of State for Finance Shri Jayant Sinha emphasized that there was urgent need to enhance the tax to GDP ratio in India, which was lower than those in some of the developing economies such as Kenya, Uganda, and Nepal. Expanding the tax base and improving the tax compliance were therefore of utmost importance. Shri Sinha was speaking at a function organized here yesterday by the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), Ministry of Finance to celebrate the Central Excise Day. The Central Excise Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the Central Excise and Salt Act which was enacted on 24th February 1944.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Sinha who was the Chief Guest exhorted the officers to work on innovative ideas to facilitate starting and doing a business such as development of mobile applications to facilitate starting of business even by a small vendor or a group of students. Officers also needed to make it attractive for a businessman to be part of the tax-net than to avoid it.

The Minister of State for Finance, Shri Sinha informed that the day was also historic for the reason that the 14th Finance Commission had recommended unprecedented hike in the States' share of Central taxes by 10 percentage points from 32% to 42%, which is a move in the direction of “cooperative federalism” strongly advocated by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself. Finally, he lauded the stellar role being played by the Central Excise Department in contributing to nation building and congratulated all the awardees and their families.

Shri Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Finance also gave away the Certificates of Appreciation to the selected 40 officers of the Department of different grades from all over the country, who by continued devotion and commitment to duty, had contributed to promoting excellence in the fields of Central Excise and Service Tax administration.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Shaktikanta Das, Revenue Secretary, the Guest Of Honour, underlined that the Department had to constantly strike a balance between trade facilitation and enforcement measure, which was not an easy task. He emphasised that the officers should focus on three F’s i.e. firmness, fairness and friendliness.

Dr. Jyotsna Suri, President, FICCI and special invitee to the occasion thanked the Department for associating the representatives from the trade and industry to be part of an internal celebration of the Department which was indicative of better understanding and cooperation between the Department and the trade, who were both partners in the economic development of the country.

Earlier, in his welcome speech, Shri Kaushal Srivastava, Chairman, CBEC informed that with a view to greater customer focus and service orientation, CBEC was celebrating the Year 2015 as the "Year of Taxpayers Services". He averred that the department was fully geared and committed to undertake the challenges for implementation of the Goods and Service Tax slated to come into effect from 1st April, 2016.