Revisiting Tax Policy & Administration Imperatives: Adapting The ‘New Normal’

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  • Last Updated on 3 August, 2021

Revisiting Tax Policy & Administration Imperatives

Aseem Chawla – [2021] 129 1 (Article)

The ongoing pandemic, economic challenges and political divisions exemplified by the tumultuous events are certainly going to leave an indelible impression on the present tax legislation & policy, as it evolves. The outlook for Year 2021-22 is less dramatic, although the tax enforcement may still be far from normal.

In the year 2019-20, prior to the pandemic, direct tax collections had dropped, when compared with numbers of 2018-19. Despite the economic activity taking a big beating in 2020-21, tax collections witnessed contraction of about 10 per cent.

In the first quarter of 2021-22, net direct tax collections rose by 92 per cent and in fairness to the statistical analysis, the refunds in the first quarter of 2021-22 dropped by 40 per cent to Rs. 36,000 crores, as compared to Rs. 60,595 crores in the first quarter of 2020-21. Analysing the numbers from another lens, direct tax collections net of refunds, in April-June 2021 were 43 per cent higher than those in the comparative quarter of 2020.

Throughout this ongoing pandemic, tax policy has played a pivotal role in supporting the economy. At the same time, limitations around mobility saw the adoption of new digital ways of working, a trend likely to continue and provide additional avenues for global coordination and cooperation in both tax policymaking and tax administration.

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