On 18th December 2019, 38th GST Council Meeting took place under the supervision of Union Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in New Delhi. Here are the highlights of the 38th GST Council Meeting:
1. Formation of the Grievance Redressal Committee
In this 38th GST Council Meeting, the council decided to form a Zonal or State level redressal committee to sort out the specific or general grievances of taxpayers at the Zonal or State level. This redressal committee will consist CGST officers, SGST officers, trade and industry representatives, and other GST stakeholders.
2. Due dates extended for Annual GST Return
Another important decision that was taken in the 38th GST Council meeting was the due date extension of both GSTR-9 and GSTR-9C for the financial year 2017-2018 further till 31 January 2020. This decision was taken due to the unavailability of the GSTR-9C form.
3. Restriction of provisional ITC claim in GSTR-3B
Now the taxpayer can only claim 10% provisional ITC in GSTR-3B for the invoices or debit notes that are not reflecting in GSTR-2A. Earlier, the restriction to claim provisional ITC in GSTR-3B was 20%. Therefore, it is important to reconcile invoices with the vendors so that you do not miss any ITC on inputs purchased.
4. Strict Action against non-GSTR-1 filers
The GST Council in this 38th council meeting decided to waive off late fee for GSTR-1 for the year 2018-2019 if the taxpayers file the same by 10th January 2020. Moreover, the taxpayer who has not furnished GSTR-1 for 2 consecutive years will not be able to generate e-way bills as this facility will be disabled for that taxpayer.
5. Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for GST Officers
Another major highlight of the 38th GST Council meeting was SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) for GST officers in regards to the action that shall be taken against the taxpayers who are not filing GSTR-3B. This will help the GST authorities to restrict or reduce the fake ITC claims.
6. GST Return due date extended
For the taxpayers of North-Eastern States, the GST Return due date has been extended from November 2019 to 31st December 2019.
7. Changes in GST Rates
In this GST Meeting, the council has decided to impose a 28% tax on all types of lotteries from 1st March 2020. Currently, the GST rate structure varies as per the type of lotteries:
i. In case if it is State-owned than a 12% GST rate is applicable.
ii. If the lottery system is State authorized than a 28% GST rate is applicable.
8. Removal of inverted tax structure
In 38th GST Council Meeting, the council decided to levy a uniform GST Rates from the 1st January 2020 on the items falling under the HSN Code 3923/6305 that includes bags woven or non-woven, sack of polythene whether laminated or not, all packaging goods including FIBC.
9. GST exemption on the lease of industrial or financial infrastructure plot
The amount payable for long term lease of industrial or financial infrastructure plot will be exempted from 1st January 2020. Provided that the Government (Central or State) has 20% or more ownership. Currently, the exemption is applicable when the government hold is 50% or more.
10. Amendment in GST Laws
In this GST Council Meeting, the GST Council has also decided to make certain amendments in the GST Law that will be introduced in the Union Budget 2020-2021.
Apart from the aforementioned highlights, prior to the opening of this GST Council meet, Deputy CM of Bihar Mr. Sushil Kumar Modi provided opening remarks about the revenue position and the future road-map of GST in India.