This resulted in taxing the transportation of export cargo by the Indian transporters / freight forwarders, liable to Built-in GST (IGST). This created plenty of buzz amongst the exporters in addition to the Indian transporters /freight forwarders. Consequently, owing to the hardships confronted, varied associations and commerce our bodies filed representations earlier than the Authorities in opposition to such withdrawal of GST exemption.
The next challenges had been being confronted by the Indian transporters / freight forwarders: a) As per the GST regulation, the place of provide for export cargo was the vacation spot of such items, i.e., place exterior of India. As a result of this, query arose as as to whether the exporters in India might declare enter tax credit score (ITC) of the GST so collected by the transporters / freight forwarders because it was believed that such credit score might solely be taken on the place of provide. The exporters, nonetheless, took an opportunity and rightly so, as principally it didn’t make sense to disclaim the advantage of ITC which culminated into refund to exporters when exports are zero-rated.
b) The bigger concern was that Indian transporters / freight forwarders turned uncompetitive as in comparison with the overseas transporters / freight forwarders, on condition that the place of provide for export cargo for the latter could be vacation spot of products.
Given this, the CBIC, pursuant to the choice in 48 th GST Council assembly, cleared the air on level a) above by issuing a clarification that ITC shall be eligible even when the place of provide was exterior India. That is additionally being supplied the legislative blessing by the use of an modification by the Finance Invoice, 2023.
Accordingly, it may be noticed that hitherto, the export transactions the place the situation of each the transporter / freight forwarder in addition to the service recipient was in India, straightaway attracted IGST regardless of the situation of the recipient. Going ahead, such transactions shall entice CGST + SGST or IGST, foundation the situation of recipient.
This modification, nonetheless, didn’t resolve the bigger concern which was impacting the logistics business adversely. The stakeholders within the Authorities had been in no temper to re-introduce the exemption allowed until September 2022. Nonetheless, to everybody’s shock, the GST Council in its 49 th assembly held few days in the past, really useful to delete the related GST provisions thereby subtly correcting the disparity between Indian and overseas logistics business. The stated modification shall now permit export advantages to Indian transporters / freight forwarders rendering transportation companies to overseas exporters / brokers, as they shall be entitled to advantages of zero ranking on satisfaction of different situations.
It’s noteworthy that transportation companies for import shipments by plane already get pleasure from exemption from GST; nonetheless, the provider is warranted to reverse proportionate ITC to the extent of inward provides used vis-à-vis the aforesaid exempted provides. By advantage of this modification, such reversals would additionally not be required.
Aside from the above, one other implication of the proposed modification could be that if the exporter from India choses a overseas transporter, then he has to discharge GST on reverse cost foundation. Whereas, if an Indian service supplier is appointed, then GST could be discharged by the service supplier for which the exporter can proceed to get pleasure from prolonged credit score interval prevalent in market. Therefore, this modification will not be an ideal answer for Indian logistics business, however at the least they might grow to be a most popular alternative for exporters.
To summarise, the influence of the proposed modification is mentioned under:
1. The place location of transporter is in India however the service recipient is exterior India (overseas exporter / agent), the importation of products by sea, which hitherto was liable to CGST + SGST or IGST, would now be zero-rated (topic to fulfilment of different situations).
2. The place location of transporter is in India however the service recipient is exterior India (overseas exporter / agent), the importation of products by air, which hitherto was exempt from GST, would now be zero-rated (topic to fulfilment of different situations). No ITC reversal could be warranted.
3. In case of export of products, the place the situation of transporter is exterior India however the recipient is in India, the transaction would now entice GST underneath reverse cost mechanism. This suggestion, nonetheless, must be handed within the Parliament earlier than it’s efficient. We anticipate this proposal to be included within the Finance Invoice, 2023 which is slated to be handed through the ongoing Funds session.
That is yet one more occasion showcasing that the involved stakeholders in each the Central and the State Governments have ears on the bottom and are conscious of business-critical points. In the beginning, there was a fear as to how the equipment of Central and State Governments would collectively take choices on the challenges / points confronted in a newly launched indirect tax laws with a imaginative and prescient of “One Nation One Tax”. Nonetheless, the GST Council has been adept in addressing the business issues corresponding to the current one and within the days to come back, we hope that each one vexatious points are put to relaxation.
Patawari is Govt Director and Vora Senior Supervisor (Oblique Tax), Nexdigm