The GST Council has planned to hold the next GST Council meeting in early January 2022. The key focus of the meeting shall be correcting the inverted tax structure of a few more items. It will also cater to discussions surrounding the Union Budget 2022-23.
The meeting will have the Union Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, as the Chairperson. It will have the presence of some experienced budget-makers and the Revenue Secretary, Tarun Bajaj. Further, the team may collate the views of all the state finance ministers regarding their expectations from the Union Budget 2022-23. The government officials have stated that the Council has not decided on the items for rate rationalisation, pending the report from a ministerial group.
A Group of Ministers (GoM) had to review the matter based on the 45th GST Council meeting outcome. The team of ministers would look into the inverted tax structure corrections, phasing out of many GST exemptions, among other rate rationalisation matters.
Official sources have stated to leading media publications that the government is not pushing for rate rationalisation sooner. With two meetings already held, the GoM wanted to wind up the study in a week but has now put its next meeting on hold without any further communication on the new date.
The GoM is led by Shri Basavaraj Bommai (Karnataka’s CM). It includes Shri Tarkishore Prasad (Bihar’s Deputy CM), Shri Amit Mitra (West Bengal’s Finance Minister) and Shri KN Balagopal (Kerala’s Finance Minister). The issue of rate rationalisation and restructuring will be further deferred. Accordingly, since the GoM’s report is not yet submitted, the GST Council meeting might have been delayed as well.
Another reason for holding the Council meeting in January 2022 is that the ongoing winter Parliamentary session will close on 23rd December 2021. Christmas and new year festivities will follow. Depending on the achievement of a quorum, the GST Council meeting shall be held, a source close to the Finance Ministry has remarked.
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Annapoorna, popularly known as Anna, is an aspiring Chartered Accountant with a flair for GST. She spends most of her day Singing hymns to the tune of jee-es-tee! Well, not most of her day, just now and then.