Nation-wide e-way bill set for rollout from January; GST council to meet on Saturday

Under GST rules, ferrying goods worth more than Rs 50,000 within or outside a state will require securing an electronic-way bill by prior online registration of the consignment

Ferrying goods across states may get quicker from next month with the GST Council set to approve on Saturday an all-India rollout of electronic-way bill from January, three months ahead of the earlier plan.

The council, headed by finance minister Arun Jaitley, will meet on Saturday via video conference to advance the implementation of e-way bill under the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

“As of now six states, including Karnataka are ready for rollout of e-way bill. Some states wanted the e-way bill to be implemented soon as there is need to keep a check on consignments,” a senior government official told Moneycontrol.

Under Goods and Services Tax (GST) rules, ferrying goods worth more than Rs 50,000 within or outside a state will require securing an electronic-way or e-way bill by prior online registration of the consignment.

To generate an e-way bill, the supplier and transporter will have to upload details on the GST Network portal, after which a unique e-way bill number (EBN) will be made available to the supplier, the recipient and the transporter on the common portal.

Introduction of e-way bill will enable tax authorities track inter-state and intra-state movement of goods.

Since the idea of invoice-matching has also been deferred till March 31, the Council may put in place a system that would checking the gaps in exchange of goods and services, the official said.

In a bid to catch in a bid to catch tax evasion, the concept was invoice matching was devised under the new indirect tax system, under which all taxable supplies would be matched against supplies received.

The invoice matching, has however, been deferred for few months to reduce compliance burden on taxpayers and encourage more return filing.

In the 22nd GST Council meeting in October, Jaitley had said that e-way bill will be introduced in a staggered manner, with effect from January 1, 2018, adding that the document will be made fully applicable from April 1. The provisions surrounding the bill was finalised in August.

The introduction of the e-way bill has been a contentious issue, with businesses protesting against the burden of additional paperwork and processes that would come along with it.