While the e-way bill was approved, the other measure for checking tax evasion — reverse charge mechanism — has been deferred till June 30.
The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council in its 26th meeting on Saturday gave nod for the rollout of e-way bill system for inter-state movement of goods valued over Rs 50,000 from April 1, while approving a staggered implementation at the intra-state level. The Council, however, did not reach a consensus on the proposed simplification of returns filing process as the tax bureaucracy emphasised on removing any scope for evasion while moving towards an easier returns filing process.
The present returns filing system (summary return GSTR-3B and sales return GSTR-1) has been extended till June and the Group of Ministers dealing with the IT-related issues will work on the model for further simplification of returns with the help of experts, Finance Minister Arun Jaitleysaid.
Tax exemptions for exporters have also been extended by six months. Decision regarding inclusion of extra neutral alcohol under GST was deferred as states and Centre differed over the legality of the taxation as the output — potable alcohol — stays outside the ambit of GST, two senior officials said. The view of Attorney General was sought by the Centre over the issue, who opined that GST can be levied over extra neutral alcohol since it’s directly not fit for human consumption and hence, cannot be given the same treatment as potable alcohol, the officials said.
However, some states such as West Bengal questioned the legality of bringing extra neutral alcohol under GST, while some other states viewed it as a loss of control of their taxation powers and hence, no final decision was taken, the officials added.
The pending items outside the ambit of GST such as alcohol and real estate are likely to be taken up only after state elections, one of the officials said.
“There were two models which were discussed by the GoM. There was no definitive view so they had left the final call with GST Council. The tax bureaucracy of states and Centre felt that the returns should be simplified but there should be no scope for evasion…the Council was of the view that there should be a single return every month, it should be simple, not prone to evasion and (look at) how to simplify it further. So, no decision was taken today. The existing system has been extended by three months,” Jaitley told reporters after the meeting.
While the e-way bill was approved, the other measure for checking tax evasion — reverse charge mechanism — has been deferred till June 30. For intra-state movement of goods, the Council has approved phased rollout of e-way bill by dividing states in four zones, with the first group to be finalised on April 7. “Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala are expected to be among the first states which will roll out the e-way bill system for intra-state movement of goods,” a senior government official said.
The GST Council also decided to extend the tax exemptions to exporters by six months. It has decided to implement the e-wallet scheme for giving refunds to exporters under GST by October 1, 2018 — the date till which exporters can continue to claim tax exemptions given by the Council in its October 6 meeting. Accordingly, merchant exporters can pay a tax at the rate of 0.1 per cent on goods procured for export purposes and obtain a refund for the same.
Also, domestic procurement made under Advance Authorisation, EPCG and EOU schemes are being recognised as ‘deemed exports’ with flexibility for either the suppliers or the exporters being able to claim a refund of GST/IGST paid thereon.
The Council has also suspended till June 30 the provision for deduction of TDS and collection of TCS by e-commerce operators. Besides, the GST implementation committee has been tasked with the work of redressing grievances caused to taxpayers arising out of IT glitches.
While welcoming the extensions of exemptions to exporters, tax experts said the uncertainty about returns filing and invoice matching creates problem for industry about preparing for compliances. “Taxpayers will need to monitor developments in e-way bills and implement systems that that will consider the staggered manner of e-way bill implementation for intra-state transactions. Uncertainty regarding return filings, invoice matching etc is a cause for worry for industry as this creates a problem on how to prepare for compliances,” Saloni Roy, Senior Director, Deloitte India said.
In a meeting held last month, the GoM headed by Bihar’s Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi had been unable to reach a consensus on simplification of returns as states flagged issues related to allowing input tax credit in the proposed revamp in returns filing process through simultaneous upload of invoices, as has been proposed by Infosys Chairman Nandan Nilekani.
Tax officials have opposed automatic approval of input tax credit and have raised concerns about whether or not provisional input tax credit should be allowed and whether or not input tax credit should be linked with tax payments under GST. The GoM will try to sort out the differences in its next meeting, which will then be taken up by the GST Council for approval, an official said.
The Goods and Services (GST) Council was expected to simplify the return filing process on Saturday, however, the Council could not decide on a simplified GST return form and entrusted the ministerial panel under Sushil Modi to chalk out a single page form which is simpler and evasion proof. Besides, tax exemptions to exporters have also been extended by six months to September.
26th GST Council Meet: Following Major Decisions Were Taken
Return filing deferred: The present system of filing GSTR 3B and GSTR 1 is extended for three months till June 2018 till he new return system is finalized. A new model was discussed extensively and group of ministers on IT has been tasked to finalise the same.
Tax exemptions for exporters extended: Available tax exemptions on imported goods have been extended for a further six months beyond March 31. Now, exporters availing various export promotion schemes can continue to avail such exemptions on their imports upto October 1. By that time, e-wallet scheme is expected to be in place to continue the benefits in future.
E-Way Bill From April 1: The electronic way or e-way bill for movement of goods between states will be implemented from April 1. However, for intra-state movement, the e-way bill would be rolled out in a phased manner starting April 15, and will cover all the states by June 1.
Reverse charge mechanism deferred: The liability to pay tax on reverse charge has been deferred till June 30. Meanwhile, a group of ministers will look into the modalities of its implementations to ensure that no inconvenience is caused to the trade and industry.
Deduction of TDS/TCS deferred: The Provision for deduction of tax at source (TDS) under section 51 of the CGST Act and collection of tax at source under section 52 of the CGST Act shall remain suspended till June 30.In the meantime, the modalities of linking state and central governments accounting system with GSTN will be worked out so that seamless credit is available to the registered traders whose tax is deducted or collected at source.
For redressing grievances: GST implementation committee has been tasked with the work of redressing the grievances caused to the taxpayers arising out of IT glitches.
In the 23rd GST council meeting, it was decided that filing of GSTR-2 and GSTR-3 forms would stop and only the filing of GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B would continue.
According to the recommendation made by Nilekani, instead of supplying invoices to be uploaded, a module can be formed where supplying invoice details can be posted, and based on the invoice data fed by the supplier, the system by itself generates the return.
GSTR-3B Return: Due Dates For February And March
Due date of filing GSTR-3B return is 20th of the next month. For instance, the 3B return for the month of March can be filed anytime before April 20, and similarly, the 3B return for the month of February can be filed anytime before March 20.
GSTR-1 Return: Due Dates For February And March
Taxpayers with an annual turnover that amounts to Rs. 1.5 crore or less are obligated to file their GSTR-1 returns quarterly. The due date for such taxpayers is 30th of the month following the end of respective quarter. For the March (Jan 1 to March 31) quarter, for instance, the deadline would be 30th of April.
Those with a turnover of Rs. 1.5 crore and above are meant to file monthly returns of GSTR-1. The deadline for monthly return is 10th of the month that comes two months after the end of respective month. For instance, the GSTR-1 return for the month of January can be filed by March 10. Likewise, returns for the months of February and March can be filed by April 10 and May 10.
Source : Press Report
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