New Delhi: The government has extended the exemptions granted to export oriented units and software technology parks from payment of integrated goods and services tax (IGST) and compensation cess on imports by six months till 31 March 2019.

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The exemption from IGST and cess granted to these units was slated to come to an end on 30 September. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) said that these levies will be applicable on these units from April 2019.

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As a principle, GST regime does not encourage exemptions as it keeps supply of goods and services out of the IT trail. It instead, prescribes upfront tax payment and subsequent refunds as part of a self policing mechanism in the IT driven indirect tax system. However, the exemption was granted in this case to ease exporters’ rigors of compliance. A large number of exporters are small and medium enterprises that are big job creators, especially in rural areas.

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PwC India partner Pratik Jain said the exemption was given till 1 October 2018 with an expectation that a proposed e-wallet scheme would come in by then, replacing the upfront exemption. “However, it seems that it will take more time and hence the exemption has now been extended till end of the financial year 2018-19," Jain said.

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