Offline mechanism too for delayed GST refunds to exporters

The Economic Times By ET Bureau Feb 27, 2018, 08.39 AM IST

Exporters have claimed that the delayed refunds running into thousands of crores are slowing down exports.

The government has created an alternative offline mechanism to address the issue of delayed goods and services tax (GST) refunds to exporters, which gives them an opportunity to approach a customs officer to correct errors that may have caused the delay.

“Recognising that invoice mismatch has been the major reason why the refunds have been held, it has been decided to provide an alternative mechanism to give exporters an opportunity to rectify such errors committed in the initial stages,” the Central Board of Excise & Customs (CBEC) said in a circular. The CBEC said because of the efforts, the errors are steadily decreasing, allowing it to sanction more than Rs 4,000 crore of refunds.

Exporters have claimed that the delayed refunds running into thousands of crores are slowing down exports. India’s exports grew 9.1% in January, well below the 26% growth in imports.

The analysis of data post October 2017 indicates that while the quantum of errors is decreasing significantly, exporters are still committing mistakes in the information furnished, the CBEC said.

Under the mechanism, a customs officer can verify and sanction refund in those cases where invoice details provided in the GSTN are correct but are at variance with those in the shipping bills.

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