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All Eyes On Next GST Meeting Now

A number of highlights emerged at the end of 47th GST Council meeting that took place in Chandigarh. A decision on rate revision on various items were taken. New items have been brought under the GST net. Next GST Council meeting will be held in Madurai

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As per reports, GST will be levied on a variety of items including pre-packed and labelled meat (except frozen), fish, curd, paneer, honey, dried leguminous vegetables, dried makhana, wheat and other cereals, wheat or meslin flour, jaggery, puffed rice (muri). Organic manure and coir pith compost will not be exempted from GST.

A number of items will now attract 18 per cent GST. These include writing/drawing ink, printing, knives, pencil sharpeners, spoons, forks, pumps required for water including deep tube-well pumps, submersible pumps, bycycle pumps among others. GST Council approved a proposal to levy a 12 per cent tax on hotel rooms charging below Rs 1,000 per day. The GST Council also decided to impose a five per cent GST without input tax credit on hospital rooms with rent above Rs 5,000, excluding intensive care units (ICUs).

Addressing the media Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman outlined the decisions taken by the 47th GST Council meeting in Chandigarh. The two-day meeting that began yesterday saw participation by Union Ministers of State for Finance and finance ministers of states and Union Territories as well as senior officials from the Centre and states. “Highlight of this meeting was that we could consider, discuss and decide on four Group of Ministers (GoM) reports on exemptions, correction of inverted duty structure, finance minister,” FM said.


Electric vehicles eligible for concessional GST rate of 5%

GoMs on Casino, Race Course, Online Gaming to Re-examine issues by 15 July

GST exempted on specified food items

No discussion over cryptocurrency assets

GST revenue neutral rate requires a correction: FM Sitharaman

The Council discussed and decided on four GoM reports. These were rate rationalization committee; casino, horse trading and lottery, online gaming; IT taxation; and movement of precious metal. FM added that council approved exemptions and inverted duty structure suggested by BS Bommai GoM. The Group of Ministers (GoM), which is tasked to submit the report on rate rationalisation, has been given three more months, said Tarun Bajaj, the Revenue Secretary, during the Finance Ministry’s press briefing.

In a press briefing, Sitharaman said that Council has decided to maintain status quo on taxing online gaming, casinos, horse racing. It was earlier anticipated that the GoM was considering taxing these elements on the highest 28 per cent tax rate. A group of ministers headed by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma has been asked to consider submissions of stakeholders again on the valuation mechanism and submit its report by July 15, she told.

The council will meet again in the first week of August to decide on the issue, she said.

"Following Goa's request for special treatment for casinos, it was decided that Group of Ministers (GoM) will give one more hearing for online games and horse racing as well," Sitharaman said, adding that the GoM has has elaborate discussion on tax decision on casinos. Moreover, the Finance Minister said that rate rationalisation aspect of the GoM headed by Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai was not taken up and the decisions taken were on corrections of inverted duties.

The Council on the first day of the meeting decided to tweak tax rates of some goods and services, including bringing pre-packed and labeled food items under the tax net to check evasion. Besides, a host of procedural and legal changes, including monthly GST return forms, and mechanisms for dealing with high-risk taxpayers were also discussed.

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