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Generation of QR Code in the e-Invoice

Updated on

The new e-invoicing system aims to have a standardised way of reporting invoices. 

Update as on 30th July 2020

1. A new refined format of e-invoice has been notified by CBIC adding 20 new fields and removing 13 fields. Certain fields have undergone changes in character length as well.

2. e-Invoicing system shall apply to those taxpayers with annual turnover exceeding Rs 500 crore instead of Rs 100 crore.

3. Special Economic Zones (SEZ) units shall also be exempted from issuing e-invoices.

Update as on 23rd March 2020

The implementation of e-invoicing and the QR code has been deferred to 1st October 2020.

Exemption from e-Invoicing and QR code has been granted to sectors such as the insurance, banking, financial institutions, NBFCs, GTA, and passenger transportation service, etc.


What is QR Code?

Quick Response Code is abbreviated as QR code. It is a two-dimensional barcode applied to items for presenting information in its machine-readable format. 

Purpose of QR Code

In the e-invoicing system, the QR Code will be used to provide information about a particular invoice in a quick manner, without the need to retrieve such information from an external source, say, the internet. This would serve the following needs:

  1. It would help in increasing the efficiency of conducting commerce by using machines to capture the data contained in invoices for quick and accurate input.
  2. It would help indirect tax officers to determine whether a particular invoice is valid and contains all the relevant particulars with the use of handheld devices. This is especially useful when they are out on the field. 
  3. Once the Invoice Registration Portal (IRP) returns the e-invoice to the supplier after assigning the QR Code, the supplier only needs to use the QR Code to generate a PDF of the signed e-invoice. 

Information Contained Within the QR Code

The QR Code will be created based on the following parameters:

  • GSTIN of the supplier
  • GSTIN of the recipient
  • Invoice number given by the supplier
  • Date of the generation of invoice
  • Invoice value 
  • Number of line items
  • HSN Code of the main item
  • Unique Invoice Reference Number/Hash

Which are the documents to which QR code applies?

Under the GST law, the e-invoicing scheme will be made compulsory from 1 October 2020 for those taxpayers having an aggregate turnover more than Rs 500 crore in the previous financial year. Thus, all those taxpayers will be required to issues invoices under the e-invoicing system in respect of B2B tax invoices, credit notes and debit notes. The e-invoicing system also requires invoices printed to have a space for QR codes. 

In the case of exports and RCM supplies, since tax invoices are required to be issued, the QR code shall also be applicable.

Applicability of QR Code to B2C GST Invoice

Where the aggregate turnover of a supplier in a financial year exceeds Rs 500 crore, he shall be required to have a QR code displayed on B2C invoices raised by him. Where the supplier makes a dynamic QR code available through a digital display, the cross-reference of the payment made through it should be made available.

How and where is the QR Code Generated?

The JSON of the invoice is required to be uploaded onto the Invoice Registration Portal (IRP) for generating an Invoice Reference Number (IRN). After the successful generation of IRN, the IRP allows the affixing of digital signature and QR code to the JSON.