News broadcasters federation meets with finance ministry, logistics sector seek E-way bill relief, GST registration for gig economy workers and more

News broadcasters federation meets with finance ministry, logistics sector seek E-way bill relief, GST registration for gig economy workers and more

Days ahead of Budget 2020, broadcast and logistics bodies meet with the finance ministry to seek relief over their problems. Also, professionals engaged with UrbanClap and other online service providers might need to register under GST. Read more updates on #GSTThisWeek. 

News broadcasters federation meets with finance ministry
Executive members of the News Broadcasters Federation of India met with finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman to request that TV news channels be treated at par with the print media industry under Goods and Service Tax regulations. Currently, print media is charged with a GST of 5% and broadcast media is charged at 18%. NBF President, Arnab Goswami highlighted the need for parity given the similarity in the business model and the importance of TV news broadcasting in the country.

Logistics sector seek relief on GST E-way bill rule
Courier companies such as FedEx, DHL and UPS are in a bind over delivering imported goods to customers because the GSTN has barred defaulters from issuing e-waybills. Consignments of companies, which may have missed filing their GST returns for two consecutive months are unable to generate an e-waybill, this the consignment cannot be delivered. But the goods cannot be kept inside the customs premises once cleared, leading to a massive dilemma. Since the logistics sector gets the goods cleared from customs on behalf of those that place the orders, under the end-to-end logistics model, they face the brunt of the rule and have no means of validating if the consignment owner has been barred. 

Gig economy workers may soon have to register under GSTN
In a bid to bring service professionals like plumbers, electricians, beauticians, wellness therapists etc under a formal workforce structure, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade is considering making it mandatory for online marketplaces such as UrbanClap, HouseJoy and Bro4u to only engage with service professionals who have a GST Number or GSTIN. Experts have argued that a majority of plumbers, electricians, individual fitness trainers etc, making use of platforms like UrbanClap have a turnover of less than Rs 40 lakh annually, automatically exempting them from paying GST, the government’s move to mandate GSTIN is in line with having a database of such professionals.  

Govt may propose GST refunds on capital goods purchases to exporters
In a bid to relieve exporters’ concerns amid an economic slowdown, the Government might propose changes to the GST policy to allow for the refund on taxes paid on capital goods purchases to exporters. Though this will need a resolution from the GST Council, the finance ministry may announce the proposal in the upcoming Union Budget, scheduled on February 1st, 2020. 

HC clears confusion over contentious issue of composite supply under GST
The Kerala high court has tried to clear the air over the contentious issue of composite supplies under the Goods and Services Tax. Experts believe this might become the guiding principles to deal with further such cases in litigation. If more than one good or service are supplied by a company, these could be considered composite or mixed under the GST system. If these are considered composite, then the GST rate on principal supply applies to the entire supplies, otherwise different rates as applicable to each transaction would be applicable.

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