Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today tabled the Economic Survey 2018 in the Lok Sabha. The Survey, which is an account of how economy fared in last 12 months, has revealed some interesting facts about the Indian economy. Here are the 10 new facts:
GST increased the number of indirect taxpayers: The Economic Survey said that the Goods and Services Tax has given a new perceptive to the Indian economy. "There has been a fifty percent increase in the number of indirect taxpayers. There has also been a large increase in voluntary registrations, especially by small enterprises that buy from large enterprises wanting to avail themselves of input tax credits," the Survey revealed. It also stated that fears of major producing states that the shift to the new system would undermine their tax collections have been allayed as the distribution of the GST base among the states got closely linked to the size of their economies. According to the Survey, there has been an addition of about 18 lakh in individual income tax filers since November 2016.
India's formal sector is greater than what it is believed to be: The Survey found that India's formal sector, especially formal non-farm payroll, is substantially greater than what it currently is believed to be. "It became evident that when 'formality' was defined in terms of social security provisions like EPFO/ESIC the formal sector payroll was found to be about 31 percent of the non-agricultural work force. When 'formality' was defined in terms of being part of the GST net, such formal sector payroll share was found to be 53 percent," the Survey said.
States that export internationally and trade with other states found to be richer: The Economic Survey for the first time in India's history has captured the data of international exports of states. Such data indicates a strong correlation between export performance and states' standard of living. "States that export internationally and trade with other states were found to be richer. Such correlation is stronger between prosperity and international trade," the Survey noted.
Top one per cent of Indian firms account only for 38% of exports: The Economic Survey found that the largest firms account for a much smaller share of exports than in other comparable countries. "Top one percent of Indian firms account only for 38% of exports unlike in other countries where they account for substantially greater share - (72, 68, 67 and 55 percent in Brazil, Germany, Mexico and USA respectively)," the Survey stated.
Rebate of state levies increased exports of ready-made garments: The Economic Survey showed that the Rebate of State Levies or ROSL has increased exports of ready-made garments (man-made fibers) by about 16 per cent but not of others.
Indian society exhibits a strong desire for a male child: The data highlighted another seemingly known fact that Indian society exhibits a strong desire for a male child. It pointed out that most parents continued to have children until they get number of sons.
Tax Department's low success rate in disputes: The survey said that the tax authorities' success rate in tax dispute is below 30 per cent. "About 66 per cent of pending cases accounted for only 1.8 per cent of value at stake. It further stated that 0.2 per cent of cases accounted for 56 per cent of the value at stake," the Survey found.
Climate change and its impact on agricultural yields: The Economic survey in its report captured the footprints of climate change on the Indian territory and its impact on agricultural productions. "Extreme temperature increases and deficiency in rainfall have been captured on the Indian map and the graphical changes in agricultural yields are brought out from such data," the Survey stated. According to the Survey, the impact was found to be twice as large in un-irrigated areas as in irrigated ones.
Direct taxes by states is lower than their counterparts in other federal countries: The survey said that collections of direct taxes by the states and other local governments, where they have powers to collect them is significantly lower than their counterparts in other federal countries.
Growth in investment brings growth in economy: Extrapolating the data, the survey indicated that growth in savings did not bring economic growth but the growth in investment did.