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Cover Story | September 2017

Just one time investment for computers & software was needed

Rakesh Zutshi, President, ELCOMA India & MD, Halonix Technologies Pvt. Ltd.
GST was introduced on July 1, 2017 and the first filing of monthly returns begins this month. Are/were there any problems faced by your members in the process of registration, setting up of tax compliance systems, and filing etc?
The continuous awareness drive run by the government through twitter, town halls etc., has been truly helpful in the first filing of monthly returns which began in August. However, still, there have been a few instances in which some of our members faced specific issues due to a lack of knowledge on the process of registration, applicability of HSN Codes, implications of reverse charge, raising of correct invoices, claiming of input tax credit etc.

Were there any compliance issues, including cost of compliance, compliance for multiple product dealers etc?
Paving the way for One Nation, One Tax, GST has transformed the country into one homogenous market. However, for its compliance is required to be routed through digital technology, which definitely required capital investment for procuring computers and software. Still, it was just one time investment and so we managed it conveniently. As far as cost of compliance for multiple product dealers is concerned, the new GST regime did not bring many changes to the business functionality except the requirement of more knowledge about the procedural compliance. However, I believe that this would also be settled in a time of month or two.

Were your members prepared for GST in advance or did they have to go through last minute hitches? Explain the ordeals, if any.
All the members of ELCOMA have been prepared in advance and so, there were no last minute hitches, and members are still following varied knowledge sharing platforms, including (GST Shayak etc.

Moreover, obstacles like slowdown of GST portals, difficulty of finding out the suitable HSN code were some of the minor hurdles to come off.

What is the difference between the prevailing prices of various products before and after introduction of GST?
If we go by the overall rate of GST, there has not been any significant change as far as aggregated market of India is concerned. However, it laid an effect on some of the states which levied zero VAT on LEDs to promote energy efficiency, but now after GST implementation prevailing prices of LED lights in these states have increased.

Is there any impact of GST on different sections in the power sector like manufacturers, fabricators, assemblers, distributors, SMEs, dealers etc?
Ans: From manufacturers to the end consumers GST has the concept of seamless flow of input tax credit across the supply chain, which include fabricators, assemblers, dealers and distributors, and so, the overall impact of GST is negligible.

Did it affect the sales/turnover of your members in any way? What are the measures you are taking to revive it?
It's too early to comment on this, as just one month has passed since GST has been implemented and moreover, the last date of GST filing has also been extended to August 25. However, at the first glance, we do not see any significant impact on the margins of ELCOMA members.

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