Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today expressed the hope that the Direct Taxes Code (DTC), which seeks to modernise tax laws in the country, will come into force from April 1, 2012.
"The proposed Direct Taxes Code brings together the policy initiatives on direct taxes. It is slated to come into force from the next financial year," he said while addressing an international conference on 'Tax and Equality'.
In a bid to modernise the tax system, the government has proposed to replace the Income Tax Act, 1961, with a new legislation.
With regard to indirect tax reforms, the minister said, "We are moving toward an economy-wide, generalised value-added tax system of Goods and Service Taxes (GST) at all levels in the country."
While giving details of the tax reforms being pursued by the Indian government, Mukherjee also called for greater international cooperation to deal with the menace of tax evasion and black money.
"Tax evasion undermines the intended benefits of a progressive tax policy," the minister said, adding, "Resolution of these issues requires international cooperation and alignment of tax systems for better cross-border compliance."
Quoting global financial integrity report, Mukherjee said annual illicit outflows from emerging economies and developing countries average between $725 to $810 billion.