In a comprehensive year-end review, the Ministry of Finance highlighted significant milestones achieved in 2023 by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), Department of Revenue. Emphasizing citizen-centric initiatives, the CBDT focused on enhancing taxpayer outreach, providing active assistance through helpdesks, and implementing faceless processes, underscoring a dedication to transparency and efficiency.
This commitment translated into an improved taxpayer experience facilitated by a revamped national website and various digital initiatives. The review specifically spotlights two pivotal areas:
1. eCommerce Procedure for Jewellery Re-import: A simplified regulatory framework enabling Jewellery exports via e-Commerce was announced in the 2022 Budget. The CBIC subsequently established streamlined regulations for e-Commerce exports of Jewellery through International Courier Terminals. This framework includes provisions for the reimport process, catering to the needs of the e-commerce sector. The changes aim to bolster the Make in India brand globally and enhance the competitiveness of Indian Jewellery exports in the evolving global eMarket space.
2. Electronic Filing and Clearance of Exports through Postal Route: Collaboration between the Department of Posts and CBIC led to the development of a Postal Bill of Export (PBE) Automation System. This system facilitates electronic filing and processing of the PBE, eliminating the necessity for exporters to physically visit a Foreign Post Office. Exporters can now file the PBE online and hand over export parcels at a nearby booking post office, simplifying the Customs clearance process.
The year’s performance metrics demonstrated significant growth, with gross tax collections reaching Rs. 12.67 lakh crore, marking a 17.7% Year-on-Year increase, and net collections hitting Rs. 10.64 lakh crore, reflecting a 23.4% growth. Impressively, 58.34% of the fiscal year’s budget estimates have already been met. Efficiency in processing and refunds was evident, with over Rs. 2.03 lakh crore refunded and more than 3.43 crore Income Tax Returns (ITRs) processed within seven days. Initiatives such as TIN 2.0, pre-filled ITRs, and updated returns have streamlined processes, resulting in 44.76 lakh updated returns filed.