Nagpur: Trade leaders across the country will be holding a two-day National Conference at Nagpur on February 7 & 8, 2017 to deliberate on various core issues concerning domestic trade of India including GST & Digital Payments. The Conference is being organized by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) and more than 200 trade leaders from all States are expected to attend the Conference. The meet assumes much significance since the Government is all set to implement GST from 1st July 2017 and also having Digital Payments on its priority. On the other hand efforts are underway to liberalise retail trade for FDI which is being opposed strongly by trading community.
CAIT National President B.C. Bhartia and Secretary General Praveen Khandelwal said that GST is an attempt to bring radical changes in taxation system of India which is a welcome step since current taxation system is fraught with various anomalies and disparities but at the same time the proposed model of GST also provides various provisions which will be difficult for the traders to comply with efficiently. Unfortunately, so far no attempt has been made by the Government to initiate dialogue with stakeholders on GST and larger section of traders is still unaware of the proposed structure of GST. In the light of the same, the trade leaders will have a serious debate on the proposed model Bill of GST and will compile a series of suggestions which will be handed over to Central and State Governments.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid greater stress on adoption of cashless economy in the country particularly post demonetisation. The CAIT while terming it as a necessity for the growth of economy has supported this initiative and has designed a national movement of holding Merchant Camps in commercial markets across the Country for faster adoption of digital payments in India. The movement is being held in association with MasterCard, global technology company. To began the movement, the first camp will be held at Kalmana market on 7th Feburary,2017 to on board merchents on digital payment landscape. HDFC Bank and other payment solution providers will also be associating with CAIT in such camps.
The Conference will also have a critical evaluation of Food Safety and Standards Act which is so far have not been amended despite the demand of traders and assurances of the Government. This issue is hanging fire since year 2011 and needs to be settled. Unfortunately, the dictatorial attitude of the Food Safety & Standards Authority of India has proved to be a major road block. The trade leaders will finalise their strategy as to how pressurize the Government to re-visit the Act which encourages packed food culture in the country and this sector is dominated either by the MNCs or big Corporate houses.
The Conference will also discuss in detail the role of E Commerce Companies who are indulging in deep discounting while violating the FDI policy which is proving much detrimental to retail trade and also discuss FDI in Retail policy of the Government. Various other issues like upgradation & moderbisation of retail trade, empowerment and financial literacy of women entrepreneurs in India, post budget memorandum etc will also be discussed at the Conference, said both Bhartia and Khandelwal.