GST Council passes support bill; may miss April 1 target

December 24, 2016 - India

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council reached a consensus on support bills on the second day of its meeting and has decided to make bi-monthly payment to states as compensation. However, the council is unlikely to achieve its roll out target of April 2017 as no decision was made regarding the issue of dual administrative control over assessees.

Decisions regarding Integrated GST (IGST) is also pending and will be taken up at the meeting to be held on January 3-4.

Union finance minister Arun Jaitley said after the meeting that Central GST (CGST) and State GST (SGST) were also cleared along with support bills. He also said that IGST, dual empowerment issue and legally vetted language will be discussed in the next meeting.

It was earlier proposed that states will be compensated using the cess levied on luxury and sin goods, however, more states will need to be compensated following demonetisation in the country. Thus, a part of the law will need to be redrafted to include some other taxes that the Council will decide along with the cess, according to media reports.

Jaitley also said that all decisions have been taken by consensus and he is doing his best to meet the April 1 deadline of rolling out the bill. Regarding dual control, he said that there are two bureaucracies and one law and hence it needs to be decided that how to divide jurisdiction for audit management. (KD)