OVER Six lakh new traders have registered themselves as taxpayers under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in Maharashtra so far. These traders were earlier out of the tax net under the Value Added Tax (VAT) and excise duty system.
The GST, a comprehensive indirect tax system, was rolled out on July 1, 2017, and was expected to bring many new industries into the tax fold.
Data from the state GST department shows that most of the new traders registered under the new tax system are ‘works contractors’. They are traders who offer a combination of goods and services such as textile workers (dying, embroidery) and the printing press. In the one year since GST came into force, 32,302 such contractors have registered themselves as taxpayers. This is over 5 percent of the total number of new registrants which currently stands at 6.15 lakh.
“The works contractors are traders who supply both goods and services…,” said an official from the state GST department. He said the textile industry and the sugar industry in Maharashtra were the two big industries to have been brought into the GST net.
Apart from these, agency services are also new entries. In the state, over 26,000 agency services have registered as taxpayers. This means insurance agents, real estate agents and employment agencies, among others have come into the tax net, too. Over 15,000 business services have also registered, bringing into the fold services such as Information Technology, finance, shipping industries.
While construction activities are also a combination of goods and services, the industry has been identified as a separate entity and as pure service under the GST, said the official. Around 12,000 construction services have registered under GST.
The new dealers registered on the GST portal are over and above the 7.4 lakh VAT registered dealers who made a swift switch to GST as soon as the new tax system came into force. Among other new entrants in the tax net are maintenance services, operator services, management services and consultancy services. The GST department is currently analysing the returns filed and the patterns noticed among these new entrants.