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GST Council meet tom; to focus on digital payments

New Delhi [India] : The GST Council in its 24th meeting on January 18 will majorly hold discussions over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's mission for having a digital-based economy, with a focus on incentivisation of digital payment of taxes under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime.

In addition, the Council is likely to make changes in the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Law to facilitate the release of locked input tax credit in tourism and hotel industry.

"If a company sends an employee outstation, then the credit flow on expenses paid such as stay in hotel, travel cannot be claimed as per current provisions. Council is likely to correct this to ensure effective credit flow," said a senior government official told ANI.

GST Council is likely to review the report of Handicraft Committee, Law Review Committee and Returns Committee.

The handicraft committee has worked on the definition of handicraft and has included 142 items under the definition. Currently, handicraft is exempted from GST. The Returns Committee report to simplify the process of filing GST returns is also likely to be on the Council's agenda tomorrow.

Stamp duty on property before registration might also come under the ambit of the Goods and Services Tax regime, sources have disclosed. This was revealed on Tuesday, two days ahead of the last GST Council meeting before the Union Budget.

Sources have indicated rate cuts in irrigation related products from 18 percent to 12 percent.

The Council is likely to discuss rates cuts for diesel and electric buses.

With the Union Budget just two weeks away, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will also hold a pre budget meeting with the state finance ministers.

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