GST Council’s JUNE18 Meet to Finalise E-way Bill, Anti-profiteering Rules


With less than two weeks to go, the Centre and States are hoping to wrap up discussions on the goods and services tax (GST) this weekend and approve the e-way bill and anti-profiteering rules.

The GST Council will meet on June 18 and will also finalise the tax rate on lottery as well as the other remaining rules.

“The main agenda items are approval of draft GST rules and related forms for advance ruling, appeals and revision, assessment and audit e-way bill and anti-profiteering,” the Finance Ministry said in a release on Thursday, adding that it may also look into fitment and adjustment of GST rates on some more items.

The Council had met on June 11 when it lowered rates on 66 items and also approved rules for accounts and records under GST.

“We hope this is the last round of discussions and all pending issues are finalised. Another meeting may take place after this but only to review the preparedness for the new regime,” said an official source.

The government hopes to roll out GST from July 1.

But approval of the all-important anti-profiteering rules and e-way bill, which are seen as critical components of the new regime are still pending.

While the Council has already approved the mechanism for the anti profiteering agency, it is yet to be notified until the final rules are approved.

The draft e-way bill was issued in April and made it mandatory for movement of goods of over ₹50,000 to be registered with the GST Network. While the States are keen to roll it out with the new tax regime, the requisite infrastructure is still not in place. The Centre and the GSTN have indicated that it should be pushed back by a few months.

Rate on lottery

Meanwhile, the GST Council also has to finalise the tax rate on lottery.

With a number of States like Kerala, Sikkim and Maharashtra earning significant revenue from lottery, sources said that the Council may choose to follow the model for entertainment under GST.

Lottery is likely to be put in the 28 per cent tax slab under GST, along with a cess. States would then also levy an additional tax or cess at the local level to ensure that they do not lose out on revenue.


The Council will also review the tax position on automobiles as manufacturers have been calling for a re-look on the proposed GST rate on hybrid cars.

The Council had last month fixed 43 per cent tax (28 per cent GST plus 15 per cent cess) on hybrid cars and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had indicated that it may not be reviewed. However, a discussion paper was floated.

ICAI Sets up Desks to Help Traders With GST

Chartered accountants’ apex body Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has set up desks to help small businessmen and traders on Goods and Services Tax (GST), which is set to be rolled out from July 1.

ICAI GST Sahayata Desks have been made operational, without any charge, in all major cities to facilitate small businessmen, traders, shopkeepers and public at large.

ICAI said these desks would be made operational at around 200 locations in all different parts of the country. Among others, these desks would create basic awareness on GST, inform individuals about the benefits and help them in migration to the new system.

“The GST Sahayata Desks would be operational w.e.f May 28, 2017, till September 30, 2017, at a pan-India level,” it said in a release today. The GST would replace multiple taxes system from July 1, and it would also boost economic growth in the country because of the development of a common market, ICAI President Nilesh S Vikamsey said.

GST: India’s Great Migration Challenge

New Delhi: Amid all the lobbying in fixing goods and services tax (GST) rates and with the 1 July implementation deadline fast approaching, businesses are busy completing the migration process. Businesses have to migrate from the present value-added tax (VAT), service tax and central excise registration to a GST registration.

Out of 84 lakh entities, 60.5 lakh have registered with the GST Network (GSTN), said a recent finance ministry statement. The enrolment window, which was suspended on 30 April, has been reopened on 1 June for 15 days.

However, it should be noted that those already registered under the GST portal can migrate. Fresh registrations are yet to begin.

Given the very large number of assessees and the plethora of details required to be furnished, migrating to a new tax regime was never going to be a cakewalk. As anticipated, there are a slew of challenges businesses are facing, the most common being of integration and upgradation of existing IT infrastructure to make it GST compliant, tax experts pointed out.

Though there is a certain level of IT enablement even today in excise and service tax, GST will significantly enhance the dependence on the IT interface. While larger organizations are better equipped to overcome this hurdle, small and medium sized enterprises are struggling.

Manual invoicing will soon be a thing of past and even completion of the migration process is an additional task requiring new manpower and costs.

The not-so-user-friendly migration process and inability of the GSTN to bear the load of data at certain times is giving businesses a tough time, tax experts said. The government is firm about GSTN being completely prepared to deal with the sea of data, but it would be interesting to see how things pan out post 1 July.

Secondly, large businesses now have to ensure that not only them, but their vendors too are registered on the GST network.

“This is a key challenge while migrating because dealing with non-registered vendors would increase the compliance burden, affect ability to claim input tax credit and impact compliance ratings,” M.S. Mani, senior director-indirect tax, Deloitte Haskins & Sells LLP, said.

Further, many companies may have to rework long-term contracts with customers and standardize them while migrating to GST. “This may not be acceptable to their customers and hence an elongated negotiation cycle would begin. Re-framing a large number of contacts is certainly a difficult task,” he added.

Also, between service providers and manufacturers, the former are likely to face larger migration challenges than the latter, mainly because manufacturers are used to a slew of indirect taxes and registrations, but service providers in the pre-GST era were not used to dealing with state authorities, with many of them having a centralized service tax registration. Registration at multiple locations comes as a bigger hurdle for them, tax experts said.

To conclude, for a country of our size, migrating to a unique and customized GST regime is nothing less than historic. Though beneficial in the long-term, a run up to GST implementation has led to near-term supply-chain disruption. Complex rules and rate structure are sure to increase the compliance burden, especially for small and medium companies and the jury is still out whether GST will really improve the ease of doing business in India.