Andhra Pradesh to ratify GST on Thursday

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The Andhra Pradesh legislature on Tuesday approved the introduction of the constitutional amendment bill to roll out the goods and services tax (GST) bill at a three-day special session starting later this week.

The state legislature will ratify the bill on 8 September, the first day of the special session.

The ratification of GST is just a formality as the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP), which is part of the ruling National Democratic Alliance at the Centre, and main opposition YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) have supported the passing of the bill in both houses of Parliament.

The state legislature will pass three other bills and discuss the drought situation in the state as well during the special session. The opposition is also expected to grill the ruling party on the special category status.

India moved a step closer to the implementation of the goods and services tax (GST) after 16 states ratified the enabling constitutional amendment.

The action will now shift to the drafting of the key legislations and their early passage, with the central government considering starting the winter session a couple of weeks earlier in November.

The Union government is aiming to roll out GST—a tax reform that will do away with multiple indirect taxes and unite the country into one common market—from 1 April 2017.

So far, it is well on course to meet the roll-out date after managing to get the constitution amendment bill passed by both Houses of Parliament last month and ratified by a majority of state assemblies well within the one-month deadline it set for itself.

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