11.08.2022: GST Council meet pushed back to September

The much awaited GST Council meeting later this month has been shifted to September as the group of ministers have not submitted their report on taxing casinos and online games.

A final meeting of the group is scheduled after August 15 an official said, adding the GST Council is likely to meet at the end of September. The report from the ministers will be ready by then.

The ministerial panel on casinos, race courses and online gaming met on July 23 in Bangalore to understand various aspects of racing and on July 24 in Goa to get an industry perspective on the taxation of casinos.

In its first report, GoM has recommended online gaming activities should be taxed at 28 per cent without making a distinction such as games of skill or chance.

Since the GST is levied on online skill-based games at 18per cent of the platform fee, the tax incidence will rise.

In race courses, GoM has said the GST should continue to be levied at the rate of 28 per cent on the full value of bets pooled in the totalisator and placed with bookmakers.

In casinos, the GST should be applied at the rate of 28 per cent on the full face value of the chips/ coins purchased by a player. No further GST should apply to the value of bets placed in each round, including those played with the winnings of previous rounds, the GoM has said.

No tax on betting using chips won during a game in a casino is seen as a sort of concession, which is not available to players in lotteries.

This was vehemently opposed by the online gaming industry, which prompted the GST Council, in its 47th meeting, to direct the GoM to go back to the drawing board and come up with a fresh proposal.

The stakeholders in the online gaming industry raised concerns over the GST rate hike. Many of them said that such a steep tax rate would affect the business case.

Source: The Telegraph Online 


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