Local self-govt bodies should pay more attention to taxes: Minister Balagopal

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KN Balagopal | Photo: Mathrubhumi

Kochi: Emphasising growth and revenue generation, Kerala Finance Minister K N Balagopal on Thursday said local self-government bodies should pay more attention to taxes.

Balagopal interacted with prominent persons from various sectors ahead of the state budget to hear opinions from them.

Speaking at the interactive session, the Finance Minister said, "COVID took us two years back. In fact, last year, there was negative growth. This year too, it has not reached the level of 2019. We also need plans to maximize the growth. The development of infrastructure will pave the way for the economic process and increase employment."

"We also need to look at the taxes. Local self-government bodies cannot move forward without increasing revenue. Local self-government bodies and the state government should pay more attention to taxes for revenue," he emphasised.

Balagopal said the change in lifestyle and occupation following COVID should be taken into account.

Mentioning the rapid urbanization of Kochi, the Finance Minister said, "As a city that makes a significant contribution to the state exchequer, the government is giving due consideration with the rapid urbanization, the infrastructure including the roads in Kochi needs to be further developed."

Balagopal laid emphasis on the conservation of the environment along with urban development.

"It is important to give emphasis on environmental protection while navigating development. In Kochi, where there are many small canals and streams, water transport should be given priority. The restoration of Dal Lake in Kashmir and the Cooum River in Chennai can be followed in Kochi as well," he added. (ANI)

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