GST Council to meet 1st time in 2021 on May 28 to discuss Covid relief

Source : IANS 2021-05-15 23:24:22

The GST Council will meet for the first time this year on May 28, through video conferencing.

The meeting coming in the backdrop of the fresh and more deadly Covid wave sweeping the country, is expected to announce a few Covid relief measures particularly on compliance matters.

It may also announce a few measures to correct the inverted duty while discuss the compensation cess dues arising in 2021-22 due to a possible shortfall in cess collections.

Two other important items including lowering of GST rates for two wheelers and bringing natural gas into the indirect tax fold may also be included in the agenda for discussion.

"Smt @nsitharaman will chair the 43rd GST Council meeting via video conferencing at 11 AM in New Delhi on 28th May 2021. The meeting will be attended by MOS Shri @ianuragthakur besides Finance Ministers of States & UTs and Senior officers from Union Government & States," the office of the finance minister said in a tweet.

The GST Council has not met since October last year when the panel of finance ministers discussed GST compensation and the borrowing formula offered by the Centre towards compensating states for GST shortfall.

The 43rd meeting of the council is expected to again discuss the compensation issue for the current year but sources said it may also take a few steps to correct inverted duty structure without pursuing any increase in GST rates or move towards converging GST to a three rate structure.

Sources said that the council may at the next meeting also take up two other important items including lowering of GST rates for two wheelers and bringing natural gas into the indirect tax fold.

A top source in the finance ministry said that inverted duty correction, GST cut on two wheelers and inclusion of natural gas into GST fold are on the agenda and hopefully the council will offer some solution that is in the best interest of all stakeholders.

Correction of inverted duty structure, especially in sectors such as fertilizer, steel utensils, solar modules, tractors, tyres, electrical transformers, pharma, textile, fabric, railway locomotives among other goods is required.

Inverted duty refers to tax rates on inputs being higher than those levied on finished products. This results in higher input credit claims by goods besides several administrative and compliance issues.