Government seeks Cabinet nod for creation of GST Council, exemption list for items under GST yet to be finalised

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Updated: September 9, 2016 2:24:56 PM

Government is seeking cabinet nod for creation of GST Council to create formal structure and a cabinet meet to take up the GST Council will take place on September 14.

Cabinet will consider administrative framework to back the Council and its first meet may take place in the final week of SeptemberCabinet will consider administrative framework to back the Council and its first meet may take place in the final week of September

Narendra Modi-led government is seeking cabinet nod for creation of a GST Council to create formal structure. A cabinet meet to take up the GST Council will take place on September 14. Sources told ET Now that the Cabinet will consider administrative framework to back the Council and its first meet may take place in the final week of September.  Revenue Secreatry Hasmukh Adhia told the channel that “exemption list for items under GST is yet to be finalised and Cabinet may also take up proposal to set up a GST Secretariat.”

The Constitution of India on Thursday stood amended to allow state governments to tax services and the Centre to tax transactions beyond the factory gate, as President Pranab Mukherjee approved the Constitution (122nd) Amendment Bill 2014 for the Goods & Services Tax (GST). Both Houses of Parliament and 18 state assemblies had passed the Bill earlier.

GST Council will be headed by by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley and will have state finance ministers. The council will decide on the tax rate, the threshold turnovers for businesses to come under the tax net, the exemptions list etc. Jaitley has recently said that the government will attempt to press ahead with the implementation of the GST from April 1, 2017, though he thought it was a stiff target. The Bill was sent to the President’s secretariat after as many as 18 states ratified the Bill. The states that ratified the Bill include Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Nagaland, Maharashtra, Haryana, Sikkim, Mizoram, Telangana, Goa, Odisha and Rajasthan. The Union territory of Puducherry also ratified the Bill.

Meanwhile, parallel to the formation of the GST council, the states and the Centre have to draft the central GST (CGST), state GST and integrated GST (IGST) laws. These are expected to be laid before the winter session of Parliament. Though the Centre is “fully geared” to usher in the GST from April 1, 2017, a section of industry seemed to have doubts about its own preparedness for the same and suggested it might need at least six months after the GST council had frozen its decisions.

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