What cleverly eye discerns as right, with stead fast will and mind unslumbering will, man should fulfill is how finance minster P Chidambaram introduced his budget quoting his favourite poet Saint Thirvalluvar.
Clearly taxation is an important area of the budget which every individual and corporate watches keenly. While the budget 2012-13 was a disaster from the investor’s point of view in terms of the draconian retrospective amendment and the GAAR, budget 2013-14 has been carefully silent on tricky issues.
So far, no new taxes or hidden charges seem to be on the way for corporates.
Vodafone has been taken off the budget with the finance minister saying that the Shome panel has suggested few things as far retrospective amendment is concerned, he has also suggested waiving off penalty and interest while going after tax, decision on the panel recommendations will follow in due course of time.
Meanwhile, the union cabinet will take a call on Vodafone’s conciliation efforts while clarifying that conciliation does not amount to arbitration.
GAAR, another sore point from the investor’s point of view, has been pushed for 2016.
So who has the FM taxed?
- The rich whose number he says exceeds no more than 50,000 in population of more than a billion with a wealth surcharge tax just for a year.
- Increase in surcharge for domestic companies whose income exceeds Rs 10 crore annually by 5 percent. In case of foreign companies which pay higher tax, the surcharge will increase by 3 percent.
- Proposal to increase the rate of tax on payments by way of royalty and fees for technical services to non-residents from 10 percent to 25 percent, which will clearly impact companies like LG which are in the middle of tax litigation.
Meanwhile, eating out in any AC restaurant will go up as it has been brought under service tax.
From taxation point of view, nothing much seems to have been introduced which could be a cause of concern for the industry but then mid-year corrections can’t be ruled out.
BUDGET ESTIMATES FOR DIRECT /INDIRECT TAXES
1. Corporation Tax: This is a tax levied on the income of Companies under the Income Tax Act, 1961. Budget estimate for 2013-2014 is Rs 4,19,520 crore.
This means more companies will have to pay tax at perhaps higher rates.
2. Taxes on Income: This is a tax on the income of individuals, firms etc, other than Companies, under the Income Tax Act, 1961. This head also includes other taxes, mainly the Securities Transaction Tax, which is levied on transactions in listed securities, undertaken on stock exchanges and in units of mutual funds. Budget Estimate for 2013-14 is Rs 2,47,639 crore.
This means that more individuals are likely to come under the tax net.
3. Wealth Tax: This is a tax levied on the specified assets of certain persons, including individuals and companies, under the Wealth Tax Act, 1957. Budget Estimate for 2013-2014 is modest Rs 950 crore.
This means that the wealthy have to pay more taxes.
4. Customs: Budget Estimate for 2013-2014 is Rs 1,87,308 crore.
This means that some goods will be costlier.
5. Union Excise Duty: Estimate for 2013-14 is Rs 1,97,553.95 crore.