The government, on Wednesday, announced the constitution of the 14th Finance Commission under the chairmanship of former RBI Governor Y. V. Reddy. The five-member panel is to submit its report by October 31, 2014.
Apart from its recommendations on the sharing of tax proceeds between the Centre and the States which will apply for a five-year period beginning April 1, 2015, the Commission has been asked to suggest steps for pricing of public utilities such as electricity and water in an independent manner and also look into issues like disinvestment, GST compensation, sale of non-priority PSUs and subsidies.
Among other things, the Commission would look into the “need for insulating the pricing of public utility services like drinking water, irrigation, power and public transport from policy fluctuations through statutory provisions,” Finance Minister P. Chidambaram told reporters here. Apart from Dr. Reddy in the chair, other members of the Commission are former Finance Secretary Sushma Nath, NIPFP Director M. Govinda Rao, Planning Commission Member Abhijit Sen and Former Acting Chairman of National Statistical Commission Sudipto Mundle.
The Commission, the Finance Minister said, would review the state of finances, deficit and debt levels of the Centre and States, keeping in view, in particular, the fiscal consolidation roadmap recommended by the 13th Finance Commission.
Besides, the 14 Finance Commission would suggest measures for maintaining a stable and sustainable fiscal environment consistent with equitable growth.