New Delhi: Former Planning Commission member N.K. Singh was on Monday appointed chairman of the 15th Finance Commission, which, among other things, has been asked to look into the impact of the goods and services tax (GST) on finances of both the centre and states, said a government notification.

The other members of the commission, which is required to submit its report by October 2019, are former economic affairs secretary Shaktikanta Das and former chief economic adviser Ashok Lahiri, Niti Aayog member Ramesh Chand and Georgetown University professor Anoop Singh. The commission will review the current status of the finance, deficit, debt levels, cash balances and fiscal discipline efforts of the union and the states.

It will also recommend a fiscal consolidation road map for sound fiscal management. As per Article 280 of the Constitution, the commission is required to make recommendations on the distribution of the net proceeds of taxes between the centre and the states. The commission also suggests the principles which should govern the grants in aid of the revenues of the states out of the consolidated fund of India.

As per the terms of reference, the panel will also study “the impact of the GST, including payment of compensation for possible loss of revenues for five years, and abolition of a number of cesses, earmarking thereof for compensation and other structural reforms programme, on the finances of centre and states", said the notification.

Further, the commission will examine progress made in promoting ease of doing business by effecting related policy and regulatory changes and promoting labour intensive growth.

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