"Intra-state e-way Bill will be rolled out in a phased manner with four groups of states".
Briefing media persons after the 26th meeting of the GST Council held in New Delhi on Saturday, Mr Jaitley said that the tax exemption for exporters has been extended by six months.
The GST Council also chose to implement the e-wallet scheme for giving refunds to exporters under GST by October 1, 2018 - the date till which exporters can continue to claim tax exemptions under the extant promotion schemes.
Jaitley said from April 1, e-way biils will be implemented for inter-state transportation of goods.
From the revenue collection perspective, it was imperative that interstate E-way bill gets implemented from April 1.
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The council noted that at present, there is no requirement to generate e-way bill where an individual consignment value is less than Rs 50,000, even if the transporter is carrying goods of more than Rs 50,000 in a single conveyance. As GST return filing is taking time to stabilise, EWB can help detect and reduce tax evasion. The Council, however, did not reach a consensus on the proposed simplification of returns filing process as the tax bureaucracy emphasised on removing any scope for evasion while moving towards an easier returns filing process.
Reverse charge on purchase from unregistered dealers has been further deferred by 3 months. Two models are presently under consideration and a final decision is yet to be taken. Further, greater awareness needs to be created among the traders about the Goods and Services (GST) structure, need for its implementation and punitive action in case of non-compliance, it said.
The council also suspended the provisions for deduction of tax at source (TDS) and collection of tax at source (TCS) till June 30.
With no decision on return simplification, the Form GSTR 3B will continue for next three months. The current process of cumbersome return filing has made a dent in GST revenues as Jaitley himself admitted that revenues were not growing as expected post-GST regime.
"The indication that the decision on returns would be taken after consultation with tax experts and others (presumably industry bodies) is a welcome indication". With the implementation of the new indirect tax system from July 1, exporters had to pay the duties first, while importing the raw material and seek refund after the finished good is exported. Currently, the last date to file returns is March 31, 2018.