New Delhi: Ajay Bhushan Pandey, who took charge as revenue secretary on Friday, said his immediate priority was to improve tax collections by using technology and easing procedures.

Pandey, who succeeded Hasmukh Adhia, will continue to head the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as its chief executive officer and will hold the position of chairman, GSTN, the company that processes goods and service tax (GST) returns.

“My priority at this moment is to help improve the tax-GDP ratio in the country by introducing technology and also making procedures, rules and regulations simpler so that people have a natural incentive to comply," Ajay Bhushan Pandey told Doordarshan during an interaction.

Finance minister Arun Jaitley had in his 2018-19 budget estimated that the government’s gross tax receipts this fiscal would be 12.1% of the 187.2 trillion economy. This is projected to grow to 12.4% next fiscal.

Ajay Bhushan Pandey said the government had taken many steps in recent months to simplify the tax system, GST returns. “From the three-returns system, we will be moving to a single-return system in the next few months. Tax refunds will be streamlined. My effort will be to make the system as simple and convenient as possible through technology."

An official statement from the finance ministry said ironing out problem areas in GST implementation and streamlining procedures for improving ease of doing business were also on top on the agenda. The statement said he would welcome any suggestions from the public on direct and indirect tax reforms.

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