•  GST standard rates may not be merged as clubbing 12% and 18% standard rates may cause an annual revenue loss of ₹1 lakh crore.
  •  A single authority for sanctioning and processing GST refunds is in the offing as the Finance Ministry looks to speed up and simplify the process for exporters.
  • As per the experts, a single window tax refund in a federal, democratic economy would be a massive jump in ease of doing business. Inter government tax adjustments have to be done on month-on-month basis to avert any possibility of temporary revenue deficit to a particular government.
  • India’s coal import increased by 13.4% to 20.72 million tonnes in April 2019 as compared to 18.27 million tonnes in April 2018.
  • Of the total imports during April 2019, non-coking coal or thermal coal shipments were at 15.08 million tonne (Provisional).
  • Coal and coke imports during 2018-19 increased by 9.66% to 235.35 MT as compared to 214.61 MT imported in 2017-18.
  • As per the experts there was the flat trend in non-coking coal import in April 2019, which was in line with expectations, as the power plants continued to have sufficient stock of coal. This scenario is likely to be continue in the current month.
  • The Centre had earlier urged state-run Coal India to pledge self-sufficiency in production to eliminate import of thermal coal.
  • The government has set a target of 1 billion tonne of coal production by 2019-20.
  •  India Cements Ltd has recorded net profit of Rs 43.85 crore for the January-March quarter as compared to Rs 35.27 crore during the corresponding quarter of last year, on account of increase in cement volumes and net plant realisations.
  • Net profits for the year ending March 2019 stood at Rs 69.44 crore as against Rs 100.62 crore registered in 2017-18.
  • Total income for the FY19 increased to Rs 5,658.96 crore from Rs 5,360.13 crore recorded in FY18.
  • For the year 2018-19, capacity utilisation increased to 79% as against 71% registered in 2017-18.
  • While talking about the cement demand outlook, Mr Srinivasan finds big ticket irrigation projects and infrastructure projects promising for the Southern Region.
  • The cement sales including clinker grew to 33.30 lakh tonne for March 2019 quarter as against 30.93 lakh tonne in March 2018 quarter.
  • The company’s volume for the year was 124.40 lakh tonne as against 111.75 lakh tonne registering a growth of 11%.
  •  The BJP’s manifesto targets 100 trillion rupees ($1.44 trillion) of capital investment in infrastructure by 2024.
  • It’s a huge commitment considering the government’s expenditure on roads and railways was about 1.2 trillion rupees for the year to March 2019.
  • The Bharatiya Janata Party pledged cash handouts to farmers, $1.44 trillion to build roads, railways and other infrastructure, a boost to manufacturing, and a doubling in exports.
  • Economists are forecasting economic growth of 6.5% in the three months to March, which would be the slowest pace since mid-2017.
  • The government has already widened its budget deficit target for the year through March 2020 to 3.4% of gross domestic product. Any further widening in the fiscal deficit would jeopardize the nation’s credit rating.
  •  As per the recent amendments, GST rates on under-construction residential apartments have dropped from an effective tax rate of 12% (8% for affordable housing) to 5% (1% for affordable housing) and without the benefit of input tax credit to the builder.
  • Having said that, the more beneficial scheme (between the old tax structure and new one) could vary between projects and shall be a factor of land value, construction costs and pricing agreed for between the builder and a customer.
  • The new rates came into force on April 1, 2019, but with an option to the builder to continue under the old rate (with full benefit of input tax credit) in respect of an ‘on-going project’; an option that was required to be exercised project-wise and by way of intimation on or before May 20, 2019.