Friday 3 January 2020

E-commerce cos may get to upload GST e-invoice for vendors

E-commerce cos may get to upload GST e-invoice for vendorsNew Delhi: In a significant relaxation for the ecommerce sector, the government could allow online platforms such as Amazon and Flipkart to upload e-invoice for vendors under the goods and services tax (GST) framework. As part of ongoing trials of e-invoicing, a detailed set of clarifications in the form of frequently asked questions have been issued. “Ecommerce operator can request for e-invoice on behalf of supplier,” the clarification said. The matter has been taken up by the government and could be allowed once the trial period is over, a government official told ET. “Trials are now on...It will require an amendment... The issue has been taken up.” The GST Network has issued a detailed set of FAQs.

“Allowing ecommerce platforms to undertake e-invoice compliance on behalf of suppliers would go a long way in facilitating compliance for such suppliers,” said Prashanth Agarwal, partner, PwC. Given the criticality, it’s important for businesses to keep track of them. Further, businesses should participate in the testing phase as part of their preparation to go live on April 1, Agarwal said.

Voluntary uploading of e-invoices on the GSTN portal kicked off from January 1, for businesses having turnover over Rs 500 crore. For businesses having annual turnover over Rs 100 crore will be effective from February 1. Only 10,000 line items per einvoice would be allowed, as per the FAQ. Foreign services providers will have to set up local entities to integrate with the invoice registration portal (IRP), as per the FAQs.

Experts say these clarifications will help businesses gear up for the new system.”With specifications for e-invoice API being released to various companies, the government's intent to soon implement it is reinforced,” said Abhishek Jain, tax partner, EY. “FAQs released provide clarification on ambiguities such as no requirement of invoice registration portal validation for delivery challans and bill of supply, 10,000 line items being allowed per e-invoice, amendments in the GST law on invoicing to align with e-invoices, etc and its timely release should help businesses gear up better for this new system.” The e-invoice system of uploading invoices on government portal will be mandatorily rolled out for businesses with turnover over Rs 100 crore from April 1.

Also, for B2C invoicing issued by businesses with annual turnover over Rs 500 crore, an electronically scannable quick response (QR) code will be mandatory from April 1. The e-invoice will help streamline the indirect tax system and ensure better compliance by keeping a check on tax evasion.

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