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FM to chair 46th GST Council Meeting today
(31st Dec 2021, 11:00 AM)


Live Updates:


The GST Council is scheduled to meet on December 31, Friday at 11 am. The meeting will be chaired by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The council is set to discuss, among other things, report of the panel of state ministers on rate rationalisation. This will be a physical meeting, which will also discuss correction in duty inversion in certain goods. The 46th GST Council meeting will be held in Delhi, an official told PTI. The Group of Ministers (GoM) on rate rationalisation will submit report to the Council today. The panel has reviewed items under an inverted duty structure to help minimise refund payout.

What’s on the Agenda of the GST Council Meet Today?

The GST Council among other things is likely to discuss the hike in taxes on footwear and textiles.

According to a government notification, all footwear, below Rs 1000, will attract GST at 12 per cent. On the other hand, all readymade textiles, except those made with cotton, will also attract a GST of 12 per cent. Previously, these items were sold at 5 per cent GST rate.

State governments and traders bodies have been demanding a deferment of this hike, citing that a number of small businesses will be affected by this. They have also warned that the move will come as a bane to the poor, who will eventually not be able to afford clothing, which is one of the basic needs of life.

Apart from this, the GST council will also discuss the report submitted by the Group of Ministers (GoM) on rate rationalisation. The panel has recommended in its report ways to help minimise refund payout.

It has also made many “sweeping" recommendations to the GoM regarding slab and rate changes and taking items out of the exemption list. Currently, GST is a four-tier slab structure of 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent. Essential items are either exempted or taxed at the lowest slab, while luxury and demerit items attract the highest slab. On the top of the highest slab, a cess is levied on luxury and demerit goods.

What States Want?

West Bengal’s former finance minister Amit Mitra has urged the Union finance minister to roll back a proposed hike in textile from 5 per cent to 12 per cent saying this would lead to closure of around one lakh textile units and 15 lakh job losses.

Telangana Industries Minister K T Rama Rao has also urged the Centre to withdraw its proposed plan to increase GST rates. Industry has also opposed the rise in tax from five per cent, citing higher compliance cost especially for the unorganised sector and MSMEs besides making the poor man’s clothing expensive.

Apart from this, several states have demanded that the GST compensation cess regime be extended for another five years and the share of the Union government in the centrally-sponsored schemes be raised as the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their revenues. The GST compensation to states for revenue shortfall resulting from subsuming of local taxes such as VAT in the uniform national tax Goods and Services Tax (GST) will end in June next year.

Opposition ruled states including Delhi, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan have made this demand. “Many states have asked for this. We have also asked to extend GST compensation. If it is not extended, the mfinances of many states will be in a bad shape," Delhi deputy chief Minister Manish Sisodia said after pre-Budget consultation of finance ministers of states with Sitharaman on Thursday.

Source -

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Dec 31, 2021

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