50th GST Council meeting to take place on July 11, tax rate on online gaming may be finalised

Published on:

The date of the long-awaited 50th GST Council meeting has been finalized. According to an official tweet from the GST Council, the meeting will take place on July 11, 2023 at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.

The online gaming industry will have its eyes on the meeting as it is expected that the Council will finalize the GST rate for online games. The decision was expected to be taken during the previous meeting, but the GST Council was not able to take the GoM report.

The GoM report has suggested a tax rate of 28% on contest entry amount (CEA) on all online games, be it games of skill or chance. The online gaming industry and experts have argued that games of skill and games of chance are different from each other and should not be treated equally.

Former Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) chair, John Joseph also pointed that the GST Council should differentiate between games of skill and games of chance.

The industry insists that the 28% GST rate should be levied on gross gaming revenue (GGR) and not on CEA as it will be detrimental to the growth prospects of the sector.

An analysis from law firm Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (LKS) Attorneys also concluded that the tax rate on CEA is not in line with international practices. Some developed nations have also capped the tax rate in the range of 15% to 20% on GGR.

According to reports it is also expected that the GST Council may define online gaming in order to prevent any ambiguities.