Rebutting the statement attributed to him by a section of the press regarding drawing off incentives and subsidies to the industries in the state, Finance Minister, Dr. Haseeb Drabu on Thursday said his remarks on the issue at a seminar at NIT Srinagar seem to have been grossly misquoted.
The Finance Minister, in a statement, reiterated that while the State Government is committed to continue the incentives to the industries under the GST regime, it would at the same time, like the tax and fiscal incentives to be devolved in such a manner that it promotes employment and value addition to benefit the people.
He said the Government would try to identify and promote such industries which have good potential in the state so that the local economy is strengthened and expanded through greater employment generation and value addition of the products.
Dr. Drabu said the Government is already working on a comprehensive incentive structure for the industries under GST regime and the same would be promulgated soon. “The new incentive structure while protecting the local industry would benefit the customers at large,” he said and added that there should, however, be a balance between incentives given and infrastructure created by the industries.
“The greater an industry contributes to value addition to the local economy, the larger share in incentives it should get,” he said and added that the reforms in the economy via Goods and Service Tax regime have provided an opportunity for the governments across the country to clean up the system. “For the first time in our fiscal history, the GST regime has given us an opportunity to clean up the system and address the scourge of malpractices,” he said.
The Minister said the Government of India has already announced that the industries in J&K will continue to get tax exemption till March 2027 under the GST regime.
Dr Drabu said the Government is working on the revival of the traditional handicrafts sector in J&K which is job-intensive, involves less investment and ensures high returns.
He said the State Government has already taken up with the GST Council the issue of exempting from GST registration the small traders managing inter-state supplies of handicrafts with an annual turnover of upto Rs 20 lakh.
He said the GST Council is likely to take a call on the issue in its next meeting slated to be convened at Hyderabad this weekend.