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Diwali comes early for SMEs, exporters

Diwali comes early for SMEs, exporters The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council on Friday took major decisions to prevent working capital of exporters from getting locked up and reduce the compliance burden on small and medium enterprises, while reducing rates on 27 items of daily use, including khakhra,which may help the ruling party, the BJP, in pollbound Gujarat. It deferred implementing the controversial eway Bill and the reverse charge mechanism.The Council also postponed imposing tax deducted or collected at source, which will particularly benefit ecommerce companies.It also decided to set up a committee to frame principles to reduce rates, depending on revenue patterns of the GST so that no ad hoc decision was taken, said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who chaired the Council meeting. Exporters will start getting credit for the integrated GST (IGST) paid for July from October 10 and for August from October 18. Other refunds of the IGST paid on supplies to special economic zones (S…

Board rooms to become more robust, transparent

Board rooms to become more robust, transparent Corporate board rooms will go through a sea change with the Kotak committee on corporate governance making some far reaching recommendations on inducting more independent directors, timely disclosure of related-party transactions and splitting the role of chairman and MD/CEO. The formalisation of information flow between promoters and companies will make sure that allegations made against Infosys and Tata Sons are not repeated, say CEOs and corporate lawyers The recommendations are grounded in market realities and benchmark India against best global governance practices. Though a few promoters said recommendations like appointing more independent directors, including women, would be a difficult task due to lack of talent. “The recommendations will have far-reaching implications on the board rooms with half of the board consisting of independent directors and dividing the role of chairman and MD/CEO. This is the best in global standards and w…

Aadhaar mandatory for post office deposits, PPFs, KVPs

Aadhaar mandatory for post office deposits, PPFs, KVPs The government has made biometric identification Aadhaar mandatory for all post office deposits, PPF (Public Provident Fund), the National Savings Certificate scheme and Kisan Vikas Patra.Existing depositors have been given time till December 31 to provide the 12 digit unique identification number. The Ministry of Finance has issued four separate Gazette notifications in this regard.“Provided that where Aadhaar number has not been assigned, the depositor shall submit proof of application of enrolment for Aadhaar,” the notification dated September 29 said.Existing depositors who have not provided Aadhaar number at the time of application for such deposit "shall submit his Aadhaar number to the post office savings bank or deposit office concerned, on or before December 31, 2017", it added. The government has insisted on quoting Aadhaar for bank deposits, obtaining mobile phone and several other utilities to weed out benami de…

Recommendations made by the GST Council in its 22nd Meeting held today under Chairmanship of the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Shri Arun Jaitley in the national capital.

Recommendations made by the GST Council in its 22nd Meeting held today under Chairmanship of the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Shri Arun Jaitley in the national capital. The GST Council, in its 22nd Meeting which was held today in the national capital under Chairmanship of the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Shri Arun Jaitley has recommended the following facilitative changes to ease the burden of compliance on small and medium businesses: Composition Scheme 1.The composition scheme shall be made available to taxpayers having annual aggregate turnover of up to Rs. 1 crore as compared to the current turnover threshold of Rs. 75 lacs. This threshold of turnover for special category States, except Jammu & Kashmir and Uttarakhand, shall be increased to Rs. 75 lacs from Rs. 50 lacs. The turnover threshold for Jammu & Kashmir and Uttarakhand shall be Rs. 1 crore. The facility of availing composition under the increased threshold shall be available to…

Relief Package for Exporters – Recommendations of the 22nd GST Council Meeting.

Relief Package for Exporters – Recommendations of the 22nd GST Council Meeting. The GST Council under Chairmanship of Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley has in its 22nd Meeting held at Delhi today approved a major relief package for exporters. Mindful of the difficulties faced by exporters post-GST leading to a decline in export performance and export competitiveness, the Council had last month set up a high power Committee on Exports under Revenue Secretary Shri Hasmukh Adhia to recommend suitable strategies for helping this sector. This Committee had five senior Government functionaries from the Centre and an equal number from the States as members After wide ranging discussions with major Export Promotion Councils including FIEO, AEPC, GJEPC, EEPC, CLE, CHEMEXIL, PARMAEXCIL and Handicrafts EPC etc. and interacting with all stakeholders the Committee presented its recommendations to the Council today. The Council identified the major difficulties constraining the export sector…

BOON FOR 4.5 CRORE SUBSCRIBERS - EPFO may Give Option to Raise Equity Exposure

BOON FOR 4.5 CRORE SUBSCRIBERS - EPFO may Give Option to Raise Equity Exposure  Buoyed by higher returns on investment in equities, retirement fund body EPFO is mulling giving its subscribers an option to set aside a higher proportion of their provident fund money for this asset class.The proposal, if it goes through, will fetch higher returns to 4.5 crore EPFO subscribers in the current declining interest rate regime where returns on provident fund accumulations are bound to see a downward trend, much in sync with other small saving schemes. Currently, 15% of PF contribution is invested by EPFO in exchange-traded funds and 85% in debt instruments like government securities.This would require significant alteration in the investment pattern of EPFO notified by the finance ministry from time to time, a senior government official told ET on condition of anonymity, as the proposal is still at an initial stage. “Giving subscribers the choice of investment for their provident fund money will …

IBBI Relaxes Norms for Information Utilities

IBBI Relaxes Norms for Information Utilities The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) has relaxed norms for information utilities, paving way for Indian companies listed on the stock exchanges to hold 100% of the paid-up equity share capital or total voting power rights in such firms.Information utilities are entities that receive and store verified financial information about borrowers and creditors. These will help establish defaults as well as verify claims expeditiously , facilitating resolution of cases under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 in a time bound manner.National E-Governance Services Limited (NeSL) is the first information utility registered in the country. IBBI has amended the IBBI (Information Utilities) Regulations, 2017 which also allows individuals to hold up to 51% of the paid-up equity share capital. This, however, has been limited to a period of three years. The new regulations also require that half of the directors of an information utility sh…