The 39th GST Council meeting will be held on the 14th March 2020, at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi. Below are 10 Key Expectations from GST Council meeting.

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1. Deferment and relaxation of e-Invoicing under GST :

The GST Council in its 35th GST Council Meeting announced the implementation of e-invoicing. As per the latest CBDT notification, the e-invoicing generation was to start from 1st April 2020. However, the Council in it’s 39th meeting may defer GST E-Invoicing and QR Code benefits till 30th June 2020. It may also relax certain category of taxpayers from E-Invoicing and QR Code.

2. The current format of GST Returns may continue till September 2020

The New GST Return which is scheduled to be implemented from the 1st of April 2020, it’s implementation might get delayed keeping in mind the technical inefficiencies that are quite obvious on the portal. However, there is already a trial available on the portal for the new return system.  The current format of GSTR 1 and GSTR 3B may continue till September 2020.

3. Clarification on Interest collection on Gross GST Liability

The FM in her budget speech had proposed that the interest collection will be on Net Gst Liability and the Section 50 of the CGST Act will be amended. However later the clarification from CBDT came that interest collection will continue to be collected on the Gross GST payment till the amendment is made with a prospective effect. Taxpayers had raised concerns on the same, GST Council may provide clarity on payment of Interest on delayed filing of GSTR 3B (beyond due date). The Department is demanding Interest on Gross Liability at 18% on delayed payment of GST u/s 50 of the CGST Act, 2017.

4. Aadhaar Based Authentication for GST

GST Council may decide to finalize contours for Aadhaar based authentication.

5. Extension of due date for filing Annual Returns and GST Audit (GSTR 9 and GSTR 9C)

The last date to file GST Annual Returns for FY 2018-19 is 31st March 2020. However, due to the problems being faced by the taxpayers on the portal the GST Council may decide to extend the due date for filing Annual Return (Under Form GSTR 9) and Audit Report (Form GSTR 9C) to 30th June 2020.

6. Relaxing the penal consequences for the notices related to FY 2017-18 and FY 2018-19

There have been multiple instances where the GST notices have been sent out for wrongful tax credit claims and non-payment of interest on delayed GST payment. In some cases, the extended due dates in the previous periods have not been considered while sending out the notices. Considering that the first two years of GST was mostly not stable for taxpayers, giving them relaxations will help them bear less damage. Hence, any penalty or late fees reduction will help them prepare for better compliance in future periods.

7. Proposed GST Rate Changes for correction in Inverted Duty Structure 

GST rate changes has been proposed for Mobile Phones, Textiles, Footwear and Fertilizer Industry. The rate calibration is due to accumulation of ITC since rate of Inputs are higher than the rates of output (Mainly due to Input Service and Capital Goods which are taxed at 18%).

8) Miscellaneous expected

States will be pushing the centre to resolve the compensation matter, who are most likely to demand full compensation for the fiscal year. Hence, long deliberations are expected in the room. The GST Council will also be discussing the measures to strengthen and build a strong GST system against tax evasions.

The previous GST Council meeting was concluded on 18th December 2019 where an important decision was made to defer GSTR-9 and 9C for the first two years of GST. All eyes are on this GST Council meeting as addressing the taxpayers’ woes tops the agenda.

9) Solution to GST Portal Glitches

One of the major agendas to be discussed during the next GST council meeting is to find a definite and long-term solution to the technical glitches on the GST portal that affect the taxpayers’ ability to file returns on time.

10) Prevent Tax Evasions

The council will likely discuss the measures to strengthen the GST system and make it fool-proof against tax evasion

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