Panagariya Chairs First Meeting Of 16th Finance Commission

Arvind Panagariya leads the first meeting of the 16th Finance Commission, discussing tax distribution, grants-in-aid, and fiscal federal relations.

The 16th Finance Commission (XVI-FC) on Wednesday held its first meeting under the Chairmanship of Arvind Panagariya here.

During the meeting, the commission discussed its Terms of Reference, as per the order by the President of India and notified by the Ministry of Finance on December 31, 2023, an official statement said.

The distribution between the Union and states of the net proceeds of taxes, which are to be, or may be, divided between them under Chapter I, Part XII of the Constitution and the allocation between states of the respective shares of such proceeds, are among the Terms of Reference (ToR) approved by the Cabinet.

Another ToR is about the principles governing the grants-in-aid of the revenues of states out of the Consolidated Fund of India and the sums to be paid to states by way of grants-in-aid of their revenues.

It will also suggest measures needed to augment the Consolidated Fund of a State to supplement the resources of panchayats and municipalities, as per the ToR.

The commission acknowledged the need for wide-ranging consultations with various stakeholders, including state governments, local bodies, Union ministries, and experts, it said.

The XVI-FC recognised that it will be carrying out a detailed analytical work and would require to rope in all the expertise that it can garner, including that from leading research organisations, leading think-tanks and other organisations working in the area of fiscal federal relations, it said.

The panel will make its recommendations available by October 31, 2025, covering an award period of five years commencing on April 1, 2026.

The chairman and members were welcomed by the Commission's Secretary Ritvik Ranjanam Pandey and other officials of the Finance Commission, the statement said.

Full-time members of the commissions are former expenditure secretary Ajay Narayan Jha, retired bureaucrat Annie George Mathew, and Artha Global Executive Director Niranjan Rajadhyaksha, while SBI Group Chief Economic Advisor Soumya Kanti Ghosh is a part-time member.

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