New Delhi, May 30, 2018

The Finance Ministry has announced ‘Special Drive Refund Fortnight’ for exporters. It will commence from May 31 and continue till June 14.

This announcement has come at a time when exporters have alleged that there was refund of over Rs 20,000 crore still pending on account of IGST (Integrated Goods & Services Tax) and ITC (Input Tax Credit).

A statement from the Ministry said that GST refund has been a concern for both the Government and trade for the past several months. So far, Rs 30,000 crore have been sanctioned to clear the dues.

“Contrary to the press reports that there has been a dip in refund sanction after the first refund fortnight in March 2018, the refund sanctioned during May 2018 is to the tune of Rs 8,000 crore. Refund claims to the tune of Rs 14,000 crore (Rs 7,000 crore on the IGST side and Rs 7,000 crore on account of ITC) are pending with the Government as on date, as against the figure of Rs 20,000 crore projected by FIEO in the press reports,” it said.

Accordingly, second fortnight has been organised which would facilitate all types of refund claims in which Customs, Central and State GST officers will try to clear all GST refund applications received on or before April 30. This will include refund of IGST paid on exports, refund of unutilised ITC and all other GST refunds submitted in Form GST RFD-01A.

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) is implementing a solution whereby the refunds held in GSTN, in cases where the exporters have mistakenly declared their export supplies as domestic supplies, would now be transmitted to the Customs EDI System. A circular dated May 29 has been issued to set in a procedure to resolve the problems.

“On receipt of the records from GSTN, the Customs System would automatically process the refunds for sanction, if no other errors are committed by exporters,” the statement said.

The Ministry has appealed to all GST refund claimants to approach their jurisdictional tax authority for disposal of any of their refund claims submitted on or before April 30., which are still pending. “In case the jurisdiction (i.e. Centre or State) has not been defined for a particular claimant, he/she can approach either of the jurisdictional tax authorities,” it said.

The Ministry has also advised all IGST refund claimants to register on ICEGATE website, if not already done, to check their refund status. Customs field formations have been directed to gear up for anticipated response of the exporters by diverting additional manpower and infrastructural resources.

“Exporters are requested to come forward and avail of the opportunity to get the refunds sanctioned during this special drive.” the statement said.

[The Hindu Business Line]