The Goa Chamber of Commerce held its annual meeting of members, the 110th AGM on June 30. While welcoming the invitees, Sandip Bhandare, president, GCCI, reviewed initiatives impacting industry during the year. He welcomed the much awaited rollout of the GST but suggested simplifying the compliance by reducing the number and frequency of returns. “One of the concern of industry is the high GST rate of 28 per cent that is adversely affecting Goa’s tourism sector, said Bhandare . He suggested a significant lower GST rate for hotels to remain competitive among other tourism destinations around the world.
The implementation of RERA was welcomed, but even here it was pointed out that, concerned government departments need to give regulatory approvals within the timeline to make the real estate act a two-way street.
Rohan Khaunte, revenue and IT minister, Siddharth Kuncalienker, chairman, EDC and R Gopalakrishnan were the main guests at the AGM. Kuncalienker briefed industry on development of Panaji and surrounding areas under the Smart City initiative and also spoke about the convention centre that is being planned and executed by EDC.
The state IT Policy will be launched on July 14, said Khaunte. “The policy together with the Start-up policy and various initiatives like the EDC Incubation Centre, greenfield IT park at Chimbel and an electronic manufacturing cluster (EMC) at Tuem will provide a good platform for the talented Goan youth,” he said.
The keynote speaker R Gopalkrishnan talked about how India can gain from the new manufacturing opportunity. He said that initiatives like Make in India, Start Up India etc are steps in the right direction but it may take some time for them to show assessable results.