Now the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has predicted India’s economic growth outlook to be highly vulnerable to a prolonged outbreak of Covid pandemic or resurgence of cases. It has forecast a strong recovery in financial year 2021-22 with a GDP growth of 8 percent with mobility and resumption of business activities. Strict lockdown in April – June, 2020 hit the economic activity and private spending badly. According to ADB, it is crucial that containment measures, such as robust testing, tracking and ensuring treatment capacities are implemented consistently and effectively to stop spread of Covid-19 and provide a platform for sustainable recovery for next year onwards. The downside risks also include increase in public / private debt levels which will effect technology and infrastructure investment, rising non-performing assets (bad loans) and weakened financial system.
Further, S&P has predicted economic growth @ 10% in 2021-22 (as against shrink of 9% in 2020-21). Increasing rural incomes, investment and consumption may hold the key.
On a positive note, Indian economy has started picking up in Q2 of current fiscal as indicated by rise in power consumption, higher number of e-way bills generation, fright load up by over 12 percent on YOY basis, business resumption index (Nomura India) is up at 81% as against 44% in March, 2020 end and so on. It is just 18 points below the pre-pandemic normal. Retail inflation is now lower at 6.6% yet higher than 6% food inflation continues to be 9% plus. It is expected that retail inflation may moderate in coming months.
On the other hand, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is committed to promote growth as the Indian economy recovers gradually from Covid 19. RBI has assured that it will take all necessary steps to ensure that there is enough liquidity in the system and promote economic growth. It has however, also cautioned that economic recovery is still not entrenched and is likely to be gradual only as efforts towards reopening of the economy are confronted with increasing infections.
GST Council is likely to meet next (42nd meeting) on 5th October, 2020 where in compensation cess issues as well as rate rationalization may be on top of agenda. The meeting, earlier scheduled for 19 September, 2020 has been postponed in view of the ongoing Parliament session.
The Finance Minister in Parliament’s ongoing session made a statement that GST Council will arrive at a common ground on ways to compensate states for the loss of revenue. The Government is committed to honour its commitments with regard to compensation payouts.
Accordingly, even if it is an ‘act of god’ situation, GSTC will discuss on as to how to give compensation to states and on how to borrow to meet revenue gap. She has however, ruled out funding the same from consolidated fund of India and that cess has to be paid from compensation cess kitty only.
Government is making GSTR-3B filing to be easier and smooth as the GSTN system shall auto compute tax liability and input tax credit available for over one crore assessees. The linking of returns is expected to give GSTN on edge in curbing under reporting of tax liability as well as over reporting of ITC. Form GSTR-2B data will flow into GSTR-3B and thus be auto populated for ascertaining tax dues.
CBIC has issued administrative instructions for recovery of interest on net cash tax liability w.e.f. 01.07.2017. Accordingly, it has been decided to address the issue through administrative arrangements, i.e., (a) For the period 01.07.2017 to 31.08.2020, field formations have been instructed to recover interest only on the net cash tax liability (i.e. that portion of the tax that has been paid by debiting the electronic cash ledger or is payable through cash ledger) and (b) wherever SCNs have been issued on gross tax payable, the same may be kept in Call Book till the retrospective amendment in section 50 of the CGST Act is carried out.
E-invoicing is going to commence from 1st October, 2020 but now various industry bodies including MNC’s have sought its deferment at least till January, 2021 for want of proper preparedness , i.e. to develop requisites technical capabilities and festive season ahead. Thus, instead of it being mandatory, e-invoicing could be implemented on a voluntary basis from October, 2020 and made mandatory from January, 2021. Further, CBIC has recently extended the dates of filing GSTR 4 and GSTR 10 upto 31.10.2020 vide Notification Nos. 66 to 68 dated 21.09.2020.
|Late fees capped at Rs. 500 for delay in filing Form GSTR 10||Notification No. 68/2020–Central Tax/G.S.R. 573(E)||21/09/2020|
|Late fees capped at Rs. 500 for delay in filing Form GSTR-4||Notification No. 67/2020-Central Tax [G.S.R. 572(E)]||21/09/2020|
|GST: Time limit for issuing invoices in specified cases extended||Notification No. 66/2020-Central Tax/G.S.R. 571(E)||21/09/2020|
Import of data in GSTR-2A
Two new tables have been, inserted in GSTR-2A for displaying details of import of goods from overseas and inward supplies made from SEZ units / SEZ developers. Taxpayers can now view their bill of entries data which is received by the GST System (GSTN) from ICEGATE System (Customs). The present data upload has been done on a trial basis to give a feel of the functionality and to get feedback from the taxpayers on the same.
Currently, the system is displaying data up to 6th August, 2020. Further, taxpayers may note that system is currently does not contain import information for bill of entries filed at noncomputerized ports (non-EDI ports) and imports made through courier services/post office. This will be made available shortly.
It may also be noted that amendment information made in the details of bill of entries will also be provided soon.
Taxpayers are requested that they share their feedback through raising a ticket on the self-service portal (https://selfservice.gstsystem.in/)
(Source: Press Release dated 29.08.2020)
Launch of GSTR-2B for the month of July, 2020
The GST Council, in its 39th meeting held on 14th March 2020, had recommended to adopt and implement the incremental approach of linking the present system of filing of GSTR-3B and GSTR-1 and other significant changes like enhancements in GSTR-2A and its linking to GSTR3B. One such enhancement that the Council recommended was introduction of an auto-drafted input tax credit (ITC) statement which would aid in assisting / determining the input tax credit that is available for every taxpayer.
GSTR-2B is going to be such an auto-drafted ITC statement which will be generated for every registered person on the basis of the information furnished by his suppliers in their respective GSTR-1, 5 (non-resident taxable person) and 6 (input service distributor). It is a static statement and will be made available for each month, on the 12thday of the succeeding month. It is expected that GSTR-2B will help in reduction in time taken for preparing return, minimising errors, assist reconciliation & simplify compliance relating to filing of returns.
Key features in GSTR-2B which would assist taxpayers in return filing are as under:
(i) It contains information on import of goods from the ICEGATE system including inward supplies of goods received from Special Economic Zones Units / Developers. This is not available with the release of GSTR-2B for the month of July and will be made available
(ii) A summary statement which shows all the ITC available and non-available under each section. The advisory given against each section clarifies the action to be taken by the taxpayers in their respective section of GSTR-3B;
(iii)Document level details of all invoices, credit notes, debit notes etc. is also provided both for viewing and download;
Taxpayers can access their GSTR-2B through: Login to GST Portal > Returns Dashboard >Select Return period >GSTR-2B.
(Source: Press Release dated 29.08.2020)
No recovery of interest on gross tax liability
Extension of due date for GSTR-4
The due date for filing FORM GSTR-4 for financial year 2019-2020 extended from 31.08.2020 to 31.10.2020.
[Source : Notification No. 64/2020-CT dated 31.08.2020]
Due date extension for any compliance/action by NAPA
The time limit for completion or compliance of any action, by the National Anti-Profiteering Authority, in relation to Anti-profiteering measure which falls during the period from 20.03.2020 to 29.11.2020 and where completion or compliance of such action has not been made within such time, the time-limit for completion or compliance of such action, shall be extended up to the 30.11.2020.
Time limit for issuance of invoice
Time limit for issuance of invoice in case of goods being sent on approval basis which falls during the period from 20th March, 2020 to 30th October, 2020 has been extended up to 31st October 2020.
Late fees payable in case of delayed filing of GSTR-4
Late fees payable in case of delayed filing of GSTR-4 (for composition dealers) for the period July, 2017 to March, 2019 has been waived fully in case of Nil Return, and restricted to Rs. 500 per return in other cases if such GSTR-4 is furnished from 22th September, 2020 to 31st October, 2020.
Late fees payable for delayed filing of Final Return (GSTR-10)
Late fees payable for delayed filing of Final Return (GSTR-10) has been restricted to Rs. 500 if such GSTR-10 is furnished from 22nd September, 2020 to 31st December, 2020.