Achieving indirect tax target a challenge: Revenue Secy

The Finance Ministry today said achieving the Rs 6.24 lakh crore indirect tax collection target is a "challenge" as the tax buoyancy would depend upon revival of the economy and manufacturing sector.

"In indirect taxes, the targets are a challenge... Because of recent measures taken by the government, we expect manufacturing to show better results," Revenue Secretary Shaktikanta Das told PTI in an interview.

The government has budgeted to collect over Rs 6.24 lakh crore from indirect taxes in the current fiscal, up 20.28% over the collection in 2012-13.

"We expect buoyancy in the economy to also reflect itself by way of buoyancy in tax collections," Das said.

However on the direct taxes side the target would "definitely" be achieved, he said, adding last year the growth was 13.7% and this year the target is 15%.

The government has targeted to raise Rs 7.36 lakh crore from direct taxes in the current fiscal, up from over Rs 6.36 lakh crore collected last year.

Das further said that most of the budgeted revenue gains of Rs 7,525 crore in indirect taxes would come in from excise duty hike in cigarettes and pan masala.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget had hiked excise duty on cigarettes in the range of 11% to 72%. The excise duty on on pan masala was increased from 12% to 16%, on unmanufactured tobacco from 50% to 55% and on gutkha and chewing tobacco from 60% to 70%.

Jaitley has announced a host of measures, including hiking tax exemption limit, incentives for the housing sector and relief in indirect taxes on auto and other sectors to promote industrial output and boost growth.

After remaining at sub-5% in last two fiscals, economic growth in the current fiscal is estimated to be between 5.4-5.9%.

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