Tax on casinos and online gaming to be discussed in upcoming GST Council meeting

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According to an official, a GST Council meeting is likely to be held in the first half of November to discuss the reports concluded by a panel of ministers on setting up different rates of GST on casinos and online gaming.

During the 48th Council meeting in Madurai the discussion on the rationalization of GST rates, which the committee which was tasked with submitting a report on, can also be discussed. Even if the price for some goods and services go up if acted upon the GST slab merger the GST Council is likely to not act upon it amidst high inflation.

The Group of Ministers (GoM) that was originally set up on September 24, 2021 to rationalize the rate was due to submit their report in two months or before November 2021 but have received many extensions for submission. The council gave the GoM till September of this year to submit their report during the last meeting in June.

The official also told the news agency PTI that a report on the GST appellate tribunal has already been submitted by the GoM but the GST rates for casino and online games are yet to be finalised. He also said that the Council will meet next month, before mid-November.

The Council also approved the interim report of the GoM on rate rationalization during the 47th GST Council meeting in Chandigarh in June. The panel was then given a three-month extension to submit a full report on rate rationalization and potential tax slab merger under the GST.

The GoM, led by the Haryana deputy chief minister Dushyant Chautala, have submitted their report to finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman in hopes of setting up the GST Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT). A final decision is yet to arrive for the applicable GST rate on casinos, horse racing and online gaming.

Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma originally suggested a 28% GST on online gaming, casinos and horse racing but in June the council referred back the report of the panel for further discussion after Goa finance minister Mauvin Godinho said, “there was a need for greater detailing and greater understanding on why casinos require a different treatment in taxation compared to horse racing and online gaming.”