New Delhi: India's tax revenue may touch Rs 30 lakh crore over the next two years, more than double of what it was when the BJP came to power in 2014, Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday.
Speaking at the inaugural session of the 'India Integrated Transport and Logistics Summit' here, Gadkari said this growth in tax revenue would be fuelled by the implementation of the Goods and Services (GST) Tax as well as the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes.
"When our government was formed, we had a total (tax) revenue of Rs 13 lakh crore. Over the last three years, it has increased to Rs 20 lakh crore," the minister said.
"And after the note-ban and the GST, the revenue would increase to more than Rs 28 lakh crore and may even touch Rs 30 lakh crore," the minister added.
These figures may be a bit optimistic, as finance ministry officials have said that growth in total tax revenue collections in the first year of GST is likely to be lower. As against 12 per cent growth projected for current year in the 2017-18 union budget (at Rs 19.12 lakh crore), the actual growth is likely to be between 8 and 9 per cent, Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia had told IANS recently.
That means, the expectation of Rs 30 lakh crore would be pushed a few years further than what the minister said.
Gadkari said that more revenue would mean a bigger budget and more expenditure on infrastructure, including logistics sector.
He said the government's basic mission was to alleviate poverty in the nation and developing logistics could go a long way to achieve that.
Due to the shortage of warehouses, large quantities of agricultural produce is ruined every year which leads to huge losses to farmers, he said.
"We need an integrated approach to develop logistic infrastructure over the next few years to ensure sustainable lives for people living in rural areas," Gadkari said.
He said with the central government giving the highest priority to infrastructure, it would not only make lives easier for the farmers, but would also generate employment and lead to "balanced" development.
"But this needs cooperation, coordination and communication between the various stakeholders including the railways, waterways and highways" as well as other sectors including skill development," Gadkari added.
The summit which ends on Friday aims to facilitate constructive dialogue for the development of multi-modal infrastructure in the country.