07.06.2023: 50th GST Council meet to be held in June-end: Here’s what is likely on the agenda

The 50th Goods and Services Tax Council meeting, which is going to be held by the end of this month, will consider constituting the GST Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT), which will deal with tax disputes and lessen the burden on the highest judiciary.

The constitution of GSTAT has been pending since the launch of the indirect tax regime which will complete its sixth year this July.

In March, the Parliament passed the Finance Bill 2023, which included amendments pertaining to the formation of GSTAT. 

According to the legislation, GSTAT will have a “Principal Bench” in New Delhi, with the President, a judicial member, a technical member (centre), and a technical member (state). It will also have state benches, in accordance with the population of the states concerned. States with a population of less than 20 million can have one bench, while those with 20–50 million can have two.

The national appellate bench will look into disputes between the tax department and assessors over the “place of supply”. However, it will not take up any appeal with regard to divergent rulings by state appellate tribunals.

On matters related to indirect taxation on online gaming, sources from the ministry of finance shared that the council may discuss the report submitted by the group of ministers on online gaming. The official also shared that the matter is being discussed with officials from Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) on the tax treatment that needs to be given to skill and chance gaming. At present, online gaming platforms pay 18 per cent GST on platform fees and not on the full value, including prize money.

However, Finance Ministry sources say the centre is not planning any major rationalisation of GST rates or tax slabs until the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Source: Business Today

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