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India's GST Council Agrees Overhaul Of GST Returns

Friday, July 5, 2019

During its 35th meeting, India's GST Council approved changes to GST filing requirements and deadlines, and approved the introduction of an electronic invoicing system.

On electronic invoicing, the GST Council said the system should be phased in, starting with a voluntary phase from January 2020.

On the reform of GST filing obligations, the GST Council agreed that between July to September 2019, the new return system (Form GST ANX-1 and Form GST ANX-2) will be available for taxpayers to trial. Taxpayers should continue also filing Form GST-1 and Form GSTR-3B as currently. From October 2019 onwards, completion of GST ANX-1 will be mandatory.

Large taxpayers (having aggregate turnover of more than INR50m (USD721,000) in the previous year) will file FORM GST ANX-1 monthly, while small taxpayers should file the first form GST ANX-1 for the quarter October 2019 to December 2019 in January 2020.

For October and November 2019, large taxpayers will be obligated to file form GSTR-3B monthly and will file the first forms GST RET-01 for December 2019, in January 2020.

Invoices may be uploaded in form GST ANX-1 on a continuous basis both by large and small taxpayers from October 2019 onwards. Form GST ANX-2 may be viewed simultaneously during this period but no action will be allowed on form GST ANX-2.

From October 2019, small taxpayers will be required to stop filing form GSTR-3B and to start filing form GST PMT-08. They will file their first form GST-RET-01 for the quarter October 2019 to December 2019 in January 2020.

From January 2020 onwards, form GSTR-3B will be completely phased out.

Further, the GST Council agreed that on account of difficulties being faced by taxpayers in furnishing the annual returns in form GSTR-9, form GSTR-9A, and the reconciliation statement in form GSTR-9C, the due date for furnishing these returns or reconciliation statements will be extended to August 31, 2019.

To provide sufficient time to the trade and industry to furnish the declaration in form GST ITC-04, relating to job work, the due date for furnishing this form for the period July 2017 to June 2019 will be extended also to August 31, 2019.

The GST Council also agreed to potentially consider GST rate changes at its next meeting, including rate relief for electric vehicles and charging facilities. It added that Indian authorities are seeking expert guidance on how to value solar power generating systems and wind turbines for GST purposes.

Finally, the Council took a decision regarding location of the State and the Area Benches for the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) for various States and Union Territories with legislature. It decided to have a common State Bench for the states of Sikkim, Nagaland, Manipur, and Arunachal Pradesh. It agreed to extend the tenure of the National Anti-Profiteering Authority by two years.