The GST council met after six months for the 43rd council meeting on 28th May 2021. Finance Minister Smt Nirmala Sitharaman chaired it. The Union Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs – Shri Anurag Thakur, the Finance Ministers of the states and UTs and other senior officers of the Ministry of Finance and the States and Union Territories, were all present at the meeting.
Here’s what was discussed:
- The GST rate on Covid-19 medicines will remain the same at 5%. GST council ruled out the possibility of adding covid related materials amongst zero-rate supplies.
- Goods and Service Tax exemption is provided on importing covid relief materials and medicines until 31st August 2021. The list includes Amphotericin B – the medicine for black fungus.
- For taxpayers who have delayed the filing of GSTR-3B, a GST Amnesty scheme was announced to reduce the late fee. Alongside, the maximum late fee on GST returns for small taxpayers has also been reduced for the future.
- The late fee waiver and interest reduction is announced for
- Filing of GSTR-3B & PMT-06 for March, April and May 2021
- Submission of CMP-08 for January to March 2021
- Companies can continue using Digital Signatures instead of EVC for filing returns.
- There’s a 15 days extension for filling IFF and GSTR-1 for May 2021. Meanwhile, the due dates for GSTR-4 for FY 2020-21 and ITC-04 for Jan-Mar 2021 returns are also extended till 31st July 2021 & 30th June 2021, respectively.
- Filing of GSTR-9 will continue to be optional for businesses with turnover up to 2 crores. At the same time, GSTR-9 will continue to be applicable for taxpayers with annual turnover equal to or over 5 crores.
- For the GST compensation cess, the same formula will be used as the previous year. Also, the Centre will borrow 1.58 lakh crores as projected to compensate the states for the shortfall for GST cess.
- The time limit for completing compliance or taking actions due between 15th April to 29the June 2021, under the GST law, is extended till 30th June 2021.
- As per the law committees’ suggestions, the Quarterly Return Quarterly Payment (QRQP) scheme will be introduced.
The topic of Inverted tax went unattended at the meeting. Even though the Inverted tax is continuing to hurt sectors like fertilisers, pharma, solar panels, textiles, etc.