Major reform bills coming in last 3 days of winter session: Jaitley

New Delhi, Dec 19 (IANS) The government intends to bring important legislation on structural reforms in the remaining three days left of parliament’s winter session, notwithstanding the setback on the GST Bill, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Saturday.

“The next three days are crucial with very important pieces of legislation coming up before parliament,” Jaitley said here addressing the annual general meeting of industry chamber FICCI.

“India has almost ceased to be the centre of arbitration and adjudication and we need to bring it back because the arbitration costs abroad are enormous for our companies,” he said.

“We are bringing in a bill for creating fast-track arbitration in the country, including single-member tribunals,” he added.

The finance minister also said that another proposed legislation would be to bring in a new bankruptcy law for companies.

At an all party meeting held by Rajya Sabha chairman Hamid Ansari on Friday, the opposition, after weeks of confrontation on various issues, has agreed to pass certain bills in the Rajya Sabha in the last week of the session, but consensus was elusive on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill.

The Congress party’s intransigence on GST, Jaitley felt, was “only for collateral reasons”.

“If I couldn’t do it, why should somebody else do it,” he said regarding the GST Bill that had originally been introduced in parliament by the then finance minister and Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee.

“Give up the rigidness on constitutionally prescribed (GST) tariffs, which can become an albatross around the necks of future generations,” Jaitley said.

The proposed Bankruptcy Code aims to reduce delays in resolution of insolvency cases and improve recoveries of amount lent to companies. The draft bill has proposed a timeline of 180 days, extendable by another 90 days, to resolve cases of bankruptcy.

The new Bankruptcy Code will help India in the World Bank’s ease of doing business ranking, as per a key criterion set by the multilateral lender.

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