More reports on: Government policies

Govt unlikely to switch to Jan-Dec financial year anytime soon

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29 August 2017

The government is unlikely to change the financial year to January-December from the current March-April anytime soon although it might advance the date for Budget presentation by a fortnight, says The Economic Times.

Finance minister Arun Jaitley in a written reply to a question in the Parliament, however, said, "the matter of changing financial year is under consideration of the government".

India, which follows the British tradition of April-March financial year, has for some time been considering changing it to January-December.

"For now (2018-19), changing the financial year appears unlikely", the ET report quoting government sources said, adding that switching this year would mean the budget would have to be presented by end of October or early November, which is unrealistic.

Besides, with two major economic reforms in name of demonetisation and rolling out of the Goods and Services Tax Bill, the country is already going through a transition, any change of this level will just add on to the confusion.

This year finance minister Arun Jaitley had advanced the tabling of the Budget to 1 February instead of 28 February as a prelude to a switch in the financial year.

There is wider support for changing the financial year as the current Indian practice is unconnected with international practices, and had affected data collection and dissemination from the perspective of national accounts.

NITI Aayog also in the past has favoured the arguement.

A parliamentary panel had also earlier suggested shifting the financial year to January-December.





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