Reconsider GST on tourism, skill development: startups

Reconsider GST on tourism, skill development: startups
Highlights

With the Union Budget for 2018-19 scheduled to be unveiled today, representatives of startups from across the country are seeking the appointment of an empowered committee to represent the SMEs and reconsider the GST on skill development and tourism sector. They also want the government to lower the income tax slabs for startup employees which will help them reduce costs.

Hyderabad: With the Union Budget for 2018-19 scheduled to be unveiled today, representatives of startups from across the country are seeking the appointment of an empowered committee to represent the SMEs and reconsider the GST on skill development and tourism sector. They also want the government to lower the income tax slabs for startup employees which will help them reduce costs.

“SMEs contribute to almost 45 per cent of manufacturing output, 40 per cent of total exports and employs 40 mn people. However, when it comes to policy making these SMEs are completely ignored. This might be because of the unorganized nature of SMEs or due to a large number of SMEs and the fragmented associations.

There is no common platform for interaction. For instance, even a good initiative like GST got rejected by the SMEs of Gujarat also and this is just one sector and one geography. A lot of these SMEs are not even heard of. My recommendation is to setup an empowered committee which can represent the Indian SMEs,” said Dinesh Agarwal, founder & CEO, IndiaMART.com.

Speaking about unfair GST categorisation, Manu Jolly, CEO, Digiperform, said: “On one hand, the government is promoting skilling and on the other, they have put the same under 18 per cent GST slab. I feel there should be no indirect tax on any private institution who is working on skill development in our country. These skilled resources are going to add to the GDP of the nation in coming times, hence it needs to be promoted. GST on Skilling needs to be abolished or reduced considerably.”

Adding on further for a common GST slab for hotels, Aditya Loomba, Jt. Managing Director, Eco Rent a Car said: “GST is higher for luxury hotels, I feel there should be one common GST slab for all hotels regardless of the category of hotel. The tax per cent should be comparable to other tourism economies like Thailand and Sri Lanka.”

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