GST Council meeting looks at issues facing MSMEs

GST Council meeting looks at issues facing MSMEs

A special meeting of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council headed by Finance Minister Piyush Goyal is underway to look into tax related issues of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs).

This is 29th meeting of the council and first with a single agenda of simplification of policy, reducing compliance burden and technology-related issues affecting the MSME sector.

The council will discuss ways to hike the threshold limit for registrations in the MSME sector and making the refund procedure simpler.

There are close to 160 suggestions from stakeholders in the MSME sector, all of which will be discussed during the course of the day. The suggestions include increasing the threshold limit for e-way bills for MSMEs to Rs 1,00,000.

The council will also discuss ways to promote employment and entrepreneurship among small and medium businesses under the GST regime.

“The states had been asked to talk to their small and medium businesses and find out their specific problems that can be discussed with a view to finding the earliest solution for them,” Goyal said ahead of the meeting.

He said the special meeting was called as most of the states wanted a focused discussion on struggling small traders.

According to an industry estimate, India had 45 million micro, small and medium enterprises in 2011-12, which employed over 100 million people. Estimates say that half of these businesses are struggling under the new tax regime due to cumbersome tax procedures.