GST was first announced in 2000 by the then government. Seventeen years later it is now a reality with the date for implementation set for July 1, 2017. Since 3rd August, 2016, when the Rajya Sabha first passed the bill introducing GST in the 122nd Amendment of the Constitution, there have been many changes in the proposed GST bill and the rules and regulations pertaining to it. Here is a repository of all the important GST news:

News on GST Model Law

The Model GST Law is the guideline on which the entire framework of GST is based. It was devised by the GST Council, which is a committee consisting of the Union Finance Minister (Chairperson), the Union Minister of State, the minister in-charge of finance or taxation or any other minister nominated by each State Government.The revised version of the model law was tabled in November 2016.

GST News & Announcements

News on Roadblocks in Implementation

Though it is widely accepted that GST will bring in changes in the Indian taxation which will be beneficial for all, the GST Council did encounter some resistance to the change. Many states are worried about a possible revenue loss, and some businesses too, have concerns over the timeline of implementation and the tax rates they may encounter under the new regime.

News on Technology for GST

With the GST, the government of India is trying to create a digitally healthy economy. When taxpayers use digital means to file taxes, it leads to an open and transparent system and creates accountability. The GST Council has appointed a non-profit, non government, private limited company called the GSTN (Goods and Services Tax Network) to help create the necessary technology for transition from current tax structure to the GST structure, and also to help businesses adopt new technologies and process for taxation.

News on Rule Changes

The GST is a constitutional amendment, and any change in the law will also affect the rules therein. Rules for invoicing, rules for penalty, rules defining the point of taxation – these are just some of the examples of any rule change in the model law.

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  1. Life-saving drugs may see a marginal increase in price while other OTC formulations might get more expensive post GST implementation.
  2. Good news for SMEs! GST seems likely to open up more avenues for securing credit in a reliable and easy manner for the sector, say experts.
  3. Telcos are having a tough time deciding the impact of GST on their revenues. The GST software overhaul required could set the industry back a fair bit.
  4. Alcohol is currently outside the purview of GST. However, experts believe this might cause more trouble for the liquor industry in the coming days.
  5. The GST Council's fitment committee is currently discussing the rates for various products. Here are the updates from Day 1 of the meet in Srinagar today.
  6. Businesses have made their GST calculations, and are not entirely sure if the new tax will lower prices. Much depends on the Council's decision this week.
  7. The countdown to GST is on and the news that majority of Indian businesses are still not ready is a bit unsettling. A survey from Ginesys gives the numbers.
  8. With dealers preferring to play the wait-and-watch game and no buy inventories before GST goes live, excise collections in the second quarter may drop.
  9. The rates on goods and services have long been awaited. With the fitment committee meeting this weekend to decide rates, we can finally have the answer.
  10. GST started with the promise of 'one nation, one tax'. But keeping multiple state taxes outside its purview defeats the exact purpose of the new tax regime.
  11. GST will subsume all the indirect taxes in India, but the tax base of the new regime might become smaller than what it is now.
  12. The GSTN portal stopped enrollments on April 30. The Revenue Department has now stated that the enrollment process will start again soon.
  13. Speaking at an event in the capital, the Finance Minister clarified why quarterly returns cannot be made possible for all taxpayers under GST. Read more.
  14. A level playing field and a seamless flow of input tax credit should allow domestic companies to blossom in the GST era, says the Revenue Secretary.
  15. Even as companies in the country prepare for GST launch, doubts about supplier readiness and flow of input tax credit continue to haunt them. Read more.
  16. Return filing under GST will be done online, and to ensure that the system is ready for taxpayers, the GSTN will conduct a live test soon.
  17. The fitment committee will soon meet for a three-day discussion to finalise the tax rates of all goods and services and align them to present tax rates.
  18. A new paper from a U.S. Federal Reserve says that the estimated impact of GST on India's GDP growth could be as high as up to 4.2%.
  19. With GST's go-live date knocking on the door, the PM has asked all states to clear GST Bills on priority. Changing the FY to Dec-Jan was also on the cards.
  20. Under GST, services might be taxed at two separate rates - 12% and 18%, instead of one uniform rate to avoid unnecessary burden on the end consumer.
  21. Real estate developers across the nation are worried that the overall cost of properties could rise by a discernible margin under the new GST rates.
  22. GST will go live on 1st July and businesses across the country are migrating to the new tax regime. Kerala is leading the way in this regard.
  23. The All India Tax Associates Federation wants the Finance Minister Mr. Arun Jaitley to completely do away with the the E-way Bills under GST.
  24. The GST council’s fitment committee which includes tax officials from the Centre and the states will meet this week to find a formula for slotting services into the four-tiered tax structure of GST.
  25. Experts hope that the GST Council will not keep variable tax rates within a single product group as it will further complicate the tax system.
  26. FMCG brands have already started to lay out plans for GST with de-stocking and raising prices before implementation to protect operating costs.
  27. Senior Congress leaders want GST implementation to be pushed to October citing an inverse impact on small and medium enterprises and imperfect tax rates.
  28. The government is pushing ahead with its agenda of rolling out the country’s biggest tax reform since independence by tabling the GST Bills in Rajya Sabha today
  29. State bank of India has become the first Indian bank to raise concerns about the compliance required for services under the GST regime
  30. The government has put eight set of rules relating to GST in the public and asked for opinions from industries and end consumers.
  31. GST will apply on the actual value of goods purchased and not on reduced amount under exchange offers paid in cash, says government.
  32. The government has decided not to levy GST on sectors which are currently exempt from tax such as healthcare and education.
  33. Revenue Minister Hasmukh Adhia says that the government is very serious about implementing GST come July 1. Delay can happen only in special circumstances.
  34. The GST Bill is under debate in Lok Sabha today in a marathon seven-hour session where it faces opposition from the Congress.
  35. GST Bill enters its last phase with four important bills up for discussion in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday. The deadline for GST is July 1st.
  36. Under Article 370 of the Constitution, J&K enjoys financial autonomy and special taxation powers which contradict the provisions of the GST Bill.
  37. Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan is of the opinion that bringing petrol under the purview of GST will help states in the long run.
  38. The new GST Compensation Bill gives the Centre a bigger share of the residual fund after the five year transition period, as compared to before
  39. The GST council had approved the bill to state compensate packages for possible revenue loss in the five years following GST implementation.
  40. The GST council is meeting is to resolve differences between centre and states over administration powers over GST registrants.
  41. A major law like the GST cannot be implemented without a few hiccups, and figuring out nitty gritties is part of the job of the GST council.
  42. The country is gearing up for the implementation of GST from July but the nuances of the model GST law are yet to be set in stone.
  43. Due to GST on e-com sector online rivals Amazon, Flipkart, and Snapdeal approach FICCI as a united front in a bid to gain exemption from GST.
  44. While the e-com companies concerns over TCS, the sellers association seems to be quite pleased with the idea of a level playing field.
  45. The Kerala jewellers association pushes for uniform gold tax at 1.25% under the new GST regime since gold tax is not part of the four-tier GST structure.
  46. Tamil Nadu textile mills have approached Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ask for a fixed levy of 5% under the new GST law.
  47. The GST Council approved the bill guaranteeing compensate states for revenue losses that may occur due to the transition to the new tax regime.
  48. The GSTN is a privately held firm that is tasked with building the IT infrastructure for transition to GST & is now under scrutiny for tax evasion.
  49. In order to facilitate GST implementation, the government is looking to do away with 16 cesses and surcharges on the union excise and service tax.
  50. Manish Sisodia wants the government to rethink and address traders’ concerns under GST more closely and focus on the most affected people and businessman.
  51. The negotiations between the Centre and the states on the finer points of GST bill have argued for the e-permit for goods transported across borders.
  52. GST Council has decided to limit the cess rates on tobacco products at 290 % ad valorem and on pan masala at 135% ad valorem.
  53. The GST Council has given the green signal to rollout GST bill from July, after clearing all requisite regulations and legislations.
  54. The Cabinet approved four critical bills on Monday, clearing the way for GST implementation by July 1. These bills will now be presented to Lok Sabha.
  55. The Japanese fiscal research company Nomura has said that the impact of GST on price rates in India would be less than 20 basis points.
  56. US beverage company Coca-Cola wants the Indian government to reduce the tax on aerated drinks from 43% to 34% and to increase the July 1st deadline for implementation to September.
  57. Impact of the Deadlock in GST Council over the contentious issue of Revenue Sharing and Dual Control