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GST rollout likely to be delayed to mid-2017

Industries seeks more time for preparation from the time when the law and rules are finalised

Policy Pulse
Publish Date: Aug 23 2016 10:04AM | Updated Date: Aug 23 2016 10:04AM

GST rollout likely to be delayed to mid-2017

The government is thinking to rollout the country's biggest indirect tax reform, GST from mid-2017. The decision came after realising that it may be a difficult task to have all the pieces for GST rollout in place by April 1, the start of the fiscal. 


The central Goods and Service Tax (GST) and integrated GST laws may make it through Parliament only in the budget session, not leaving much time for preparation for the industry. 


"All options are still open. The target date is April 1and we will try to keep it way," said an official. He further added that the industry has sought six months for preparation from the time when the law and rules are finalised. 


The finance ministry has had a series of consultations with representatives of various sectors who were asked to give their views on being comfortable with a June or July, 2017 rollout.


The government wants the industry to put its house in order soon after the final draft of the law are made public, said another official, as reported in Economic Times. 


Experts said it would be preferred if the new regime is rolled out after adequate preparation, even if it is in the middle of the year. As GST is an indirect tax, a midyear rollout does not create much issue. The negative list regime for service was introduced from July 1, 2012.


"It can come in any quarter of the year; the thing is they should be ready for it. It is better to launch it after proper preparations," said S D Majumder, former chairman of Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC).