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22 everything you need to know about the GST council

Indian constitution has provided for the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council. As per an official release, the GST council was made a permanent body after the implementation of GST. GST Council is the advisory panel of the Union and State Governments on issues concerning GST. It is the main independent authority for the implementation of the Goods and Service Tax in India.

Since the role of GST council is so crucial for directing the indian economy it would behove you as a citizen to be aware about it and its latest announcements. Their decisions could have a direct impact on prices of products or indirect impact on certain business related things like types of mis reports. Click here to learn more

Hence, this article tries to provide comprehensive information about the composition of the GST council, its role, responsibilities and a brief history.

Background

The GST Council has been set up under Article 279A of the Constitution. The President of India is empowered to constitute such a council by order. It was established in November 2016 through a Presidential Order. The council has been given a Constitutional status to ensure cooperative federalism in India. Its basic function is to ensure uniformity in the application of the goods and services tax across all states in India. The council’s secretariat is present in Delhi. As ex-officio Secretary to the Council, the Union Revenue Secretary also attends all meetings.

What is the vision and mission of the council?

The GST Council shall aim to create a harmonised national market for products (goods and services). Also, the Council has to determine how it will carry out its activities and the schedules of its meetings.

  • The vision of the council: The GST council is India’s first constitutional body that is responsible for taking all the decisions regarding GST. In pursuit of this goal, the council will aim to achieve high standards of cooperative federalism in the operations of the council.
  • The mission of the council: Progressing with the times, a GST structure that is user-friendly and also technology-driven

Who are the members of the council?

The GST Council, chaired by the Union Finance Minister, is a collective body consisting of the Centre and all the states to decide on various aspects of GST like tax rates, exemptions etc. The GST council members include Union Finance Minister as Chairperson, Union Minister of State in charge of Revenue or Finance as Member, Minister in charge of finance or taxation or any other minister nominated by each state government as Member and one member from each state as Member. There will be two formats of meetings: full council meeting and committee meeting. The members select one person from amongst themselves for the role of Vice-chairperson of the council.

Additionally, it was decided to include the chairperson of CBEC(Central Board of Excise and Customs ) as a permanent invitee however, the CBEC’s chairperson won’t have any voting rights in the meetings of the council

What are the functions of the GST council?

GST council regulates and deals with all aspects of GST. Some of its major functions include:

  • deciding on rates, exemptions
  • threshold limits and other issues related to GST
  • preparation of draft laws related to GST
  • monitoring the compliance of states with Union laws regarding GST
  • settling disputes among states on sharing of revenues from GST
  • preparing common forms for filing returns and payment of taxes under GST
  • determining methods for tracking goods or services that are transferred from one state to another

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