Najib Shah. Chairman




D.O. No 137/Chairman(GBEC)/2016

17th September, 2016

Dear Colleague,

The journey to rollout the Goods and Services Tax (GST) has commenced with the enactment of the 101st Constitution Amendment Act, 2016 on 8th September, 2016 and the subsequent notifications. The Government is committed and has set in motion a slew of steps to ensure that the GST conies into force from 1st of April, 2017. In this backdrop, the role of CBEC is of utmost significance and importance.

2. As you are aware, CBEC has been closely associated in the drafting of the model GST law, rules and procedures. NACEN is engaged in the mammoth task of training officials of both Centre & States- our target is to train 60,000 officers in the next few months.

3. There are undoubtedly huge challenges before us as we go about learning the nuances and provisions of the new law. We need to recognize the changes taking place and reorganize our existing administrative set-up to meet the requirements of the new tax regime.. In fact, the Board’s name shall itself, undergo a change with the subsuming of the Central Excise and Service tax. Change management will be of paramount importance. We will have to provide a lead role in meeting the implementation challenges, training the officials and trade and industry, holding workshop with all the stakeholders, acquiring and imparting necessary IT skills.

4. Given the tectonic and positive changes taking place in the country, I am dismayed to learn about concerns being expressed in some quarters, about the future of the service. We are at the cusp of the most historic change in the indirect tax structure and should welcome this exciting opportunity.

5. As a central service, CBEC will continue to collect CGST and IGST. There will be a growth not only in revenue but also in the tax base. We are in the process of en-cardering 50 per-cent of all the posts in the GST Council Secretariat for CBEC. Petroleum and Tobacco products, which account for substantial revenue, shall for the present continue to be subject to central excise duty.

6. Putting in place a robust IT network is an absolute must for implementation of GST. The Directorate of Systems is in the process of being strengthened; the IT infrastructure is being revamped and upgraded to meet the requirements of GST. GSTN, an independent company which will provide the front end support, already has CBEC officers on deputation. We have also called for willing officers for some more posts in GSTN.

7. I would urge you to rise up to the challenges. It is incumbent on each one of us to ensure the success of the most ambitious indirect tax reform in the world. I am confident, that we as a service should not be found wanting, in fulfilling the agenda of the Government and expectations of the industry.

With best wishes,

Yours sincerely,

(Najib Shah)

All Chief Commissioners/Directors General/Principal Commissioners.

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