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Indian tax reform disrupted businesses: IFAC Survey finds

Around 64% of Indians surveyed believe that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rollout led to a disruption among the businesses community across the country, according to an International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) survey.

The survey, with a sample size of 1,200, was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of IFAC from October 30 to November 2, 2017. It was conducted to assess public perception on key issues facing the accounting profession.

76% of respondents believe that a knowledgeable accounting professional is essential for businesses to be compliant with GST, underscoring the willingness for compliance and the trust of people in the acumen and expertise of accounting professionals.

The GST, implemented 1 July 2017, aims to solve long existing challenges prevalent in the current taxation system.

For small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in particular, the GST bill will help eradicate indirect taxes, provide more transparency of the tax process, draw projections of production cost and make access to new geographies for business expansion more accessible, the survey reported.

There are more than 50m SMEs in the country which are expected to contribute nearly 50% of India’s GDP by 2020.

70% of respondents think that technologies such as blockchain, automation, and AI will replace professional accountants in the next 10 years.

However, 64% believe that they would not trust AI alone to fulfil their personal and business accounting needs.

According to the IFAC survey, 80% of respondents think the accounting profession enhances the financial transparency in the economy.

 

By Joe Pickard

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