COVID Essential Exempted from I-GST; Amnesty Scheme Announced

Story Highlights
  • 43rd GST Council meeting held on May 28
  • Council exempted COVID essentials and Amphotericin B of I-GST
  • Amnesty Scheme launched for small taxpayers

New Delhi: Finance Minister Ms Sitharaman on Friday chaired the 43rd GST Council meeting.  Ministry of State Anurag Thakur, along with the finance ministers of states and Union territories all solicited the meet. Ahead of the meet, senior member of the opposition party Priyanka Vadra demanded the exemption of COVID Essentials from GST. 

However, the council exempted the import of the medicine Amphotericin-B used for treating ‘black fungus’ (Mucormycosis) from the levy of I-GST (Integrated GST). Additionally, the panel also decided to waive I-GST on free COVID-19-related supplies from abroad till August 31.

Furthermore, an amnesty scheme was documented for small GST taxpayers, allowing the filing of returns with a reduced late fee. 

Speaking on details of the amnesty scheme, FM Nirmala Sitharaman said, “One of the biggest decisions today is the reduction of compliance burden of small taxpayers and medium-sized taxpayers… To provide relief to small taxpayers, an amnesty scheme has been recommended for reducing the late fee payable in these cases. Taxpayers can now file their pending returns and avail the benefits of this amnesty scheme with reduced late fees.”

Throwing light on the vaccine shortage, she stated that India is engaging with suppliers and manufacturers of different countries for the doses, and the supply will be more than what it is in the coming months. 

 Furthermore, she said that the Centre will borrow Rs 1.58 lakh crore to compensate states for the loss of revenue from GST. In a statement over the cess, she said,” On GST compensation cess, the same formula as last year will be adopted this year too. The rough estimate is that Centre will have to borrow Rs 1.58 lakh crores and pass it on to the states.”

The Council has decided to hold a special session to discuss the extension of paying compensation to states beyond 2022.

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