Proper implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in India can be worked upon and is not an "unfixable problem", former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan has said, reiterating that demonetisation was "not a well-planned, well thought-out" move.
With the Modi government bringing in ambitious reforms like GST and demonetisation, Rajan said it would be good if such measures were better implemented.
"On the Goods and Services Tax, we will figure it out eventually. It will be nice if we could implement much better than we do. But it's (GST) not an unfixable problem. We can work on it. I wouldn't give up hope at this point on that," Rajan told an audience at the Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge yesterday.
Rajan, who is currently the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, gave the 2018 Albert H Gordon Lecture on the topic 'Leverage, Financial Crises, and Policies to Raise Economic Growth'. He was asked about the "shoddy implementation" of big ticket reforms like GST and demonetisation in India.
On demonetisation, Rajan rejected the claim that the Reserve Bank of India had not been consulted by the government before it went on to declare 1,000 and 500-rupee currency notes as illegal tender in November 2016. He however reiterated that the move to cancel 87.5 per cent of the currency value was "not a good idea".
"I didn't ever say that I wasn't consulted (on demonetisation). In fact, I have made it quite clear that we were consulted and we didn't think it was a good idea," Rajan said.
He said demonetisation "was not a well-planned, well thought-out, useful exercise an