The Next GST Council Meeting Would Happen in November or Early December

The 48th Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meeting, originally scheduled for August 2022, could not occur as the Group of Ministers (GoMs) needed more time to submit their reports. The sources say that the next Council meeting could happen in November after the Himachal Pradesh elections or early December after the Gujarat elections.

Also, there’s no unanimity in the GoM on casinos, race courses and online gaming led by the Meghalaya Chief Minister regarding charging 28% GST on the full value without differentiating games of skill or chance. The GoM already sought a legal opinion before submitting the additional report on whether the prize money in horse racing and online gaming is covered within the actionable claim or not. 

However, GoM has not submitted the report even though it has planned to do so by 16th September 2022, whereas they might meet after Diwali.

In its interim report, GoM had recommended that 28% GST be charged on the full value of the consideration in case of online gaming, including the entry fee paid. However, this move will increase the tax burden on the gaming industry as 18% GST is currently charged on participation fees in the case of skill-based gaming.

Earlier, the GoM stated that, in the case of racecourses, 28% GST be continued on the total value of bets pooled in the totalisator and placed with the bookmakers. Similarly, in the case of casinos, 28% GST was applied on the full face value of the coins/chips purchased from the casino by a player. 

However, the GoM mentioned in its interim report that once GST is levied on the purchase of coins/chips, no further GST applies to the bets placed in each round. It applies even if the player uses the previous round winnings.

The GoM on tribunals convened by the Haryana deputy Chief Minister finalised that the GST Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) shall set up a principal bench in New Delhi and similar benches in various states. 

Another GoM on GST rates rationalisation headed by Karnataka Chief Minister has yet to submit its report. However, Council might give the GoM more time to submit a report amid tax structure overhaul can be done after inflation is controlled.

Apart from GoM reports, the Council may consider further cutting down the exemption list and rectifying the inverted duty structure. Also, the Council might consider the Supreme Court recommendation in the case of Hero Motocorp Ltd. v. Union of India & Ors. to consider granting budgetary support and continuing exemption benefits under the erstwhile excise regime.

For any clarifications/feedback on the topic, please contact the writer at dvsr.anjaneyulu@cleartax.in

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