The all-powerful Goods & Services Tax (GST) Council today in its 12th meeting held at New Delhi, approved the final drafts of UTGST (Union Territory GST) and SGST (state GST), with these, all five enabling draft bills stand approved and paving way for implementing the country's biggest and most ambitious tax reform.
It is expected that the Bills - Central GST (CGST), Union Territory GST (UTGST), Integrated GST (IGST) and Compensation Bills will be tabled in the Parliament's ongoing budget session itself.
State GST (SGST) Bills will be taken up by the respective State Cabinets and Assemblies.
Other Key Decisions
1. Cess has been capped at 15%.
2. There will be five categories of goods on which a cess will be levied - Pan Masala, tobacco and its products, coal and related fuels, mineral waters, aerated waters and drinks, luxury cars etc.
- Pan Masala - @135%.
- Tobacco products - @290% or Rs. 4170 per thousand sticks or combination of both.
- Coal & lignite - @Rs. 400 per tonne.
- Mineral Water, Aerated Drinks, Luxury Cars - @15%.
However, actual rates will be lower than the said caps.
3. Special Economic Zones - Supplies will be at 'Zero Rate'.
4. The GST Council, in its next meeting, scheduled on 31st March, 2017, will take up the rules on remaining four categories i.e. on composition, valuation, tax collected at source and transitions.
5. Further, the Council will consider changes on approved rules i.e. refunds, invoices, returns, payments and registration, if any.
The author can also be reached at shreetaxchambers @bsnl.in