The GST Council is slated to meet on January 10 to discuss lowering GST on under-construction flats and houses to 5 per cent, as well as hiking exemption threshold for small and medium enterprises.
The council, in its previous meeting on December 22, 2018, had rationalised the 28 per cent tax slab and reduced rates on 23 goods and services.
“The next meeting is scheduled for January 10,” an official told media.
This would be the 32nd meeting of the council, which is chaired by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and comprises his state counterparts.
Briefing reporters after the recent council meeting, Jaitley had said that the next meeting would consider rationalisation of tax rates on residential properties and raising the threshold limit for MSMEs from the current Rs 20 lakh.
Also, the council would consider a composition scheme for small suppliers, apart from discussing levying a calamity cess as well as GST rates on the lottery.
The GST Council is likely to consider lowering GST on under-construction flats and houses to 5 per cent, an official said.
Currently, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is levied at 12 per cent on payments made for under-construction property or ready-to-move-in flats where completion certificate has not been issued at the time of sale.
However, GST is not levied on buyers of real estate properties for which completion certificate has been issued at the time of sale.
An official said that this 12 per cent GST rate ideally would have been partially offset by way of taxes paid on inputs by builders and hence the actual incidence of GST on under-construction home buyers would have been around 5-6 per cent. However, builders are not passing on the input tax credit (ITC) benefit to consumers.
“One of the proposals before the council is to lower the GST rate to 5 per cent for builders who purchase 80 per cent of inputs from registered dealers,” an official said.
Also the report of group of ministers looking into the concerns of MSMEs under the GST regime would be taken up for consideration.
Currently, businesses with a turnover of up to Rs 20 lakh are exempted from GST. The Council could consider hiking the threshold to Rs 75 lakh for only MSMEs.
Besides, the council would consider composition scheme for small suppliers, since it felt that the number of small service providers getting registered under GST was not on expected lines.
“An in-principle unanimous decision was taken that a composition scheme be framed for small service providers. The threshold and composition charge would be decided in the next meeting,” Jaitley had said on December 22.
With regard to GST on the lottery, currently, state-organised lottery attract 12 per cent GST, while state-authorised lottery attracts 28 per cent.
A final view would be taken as to whether the status quo should continue on GST on the lottery or if there is a scope to tweak it.
Also, a view on levying calamity cess under GST would be discussed by the council.
Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi led-group of ministers (GoM) had in October had decided to seek states’ views on whether a state-specific or a nationwide ‘disaster tax’ should be levied under the GST.
The GST Council, the highest decision-making body of the new tax regime, had in September decided to set up a seven-member GoM to consider a cess for Kerala flood rehabilitation.
“The next GST Council meeting within 3 weeks of the last meeting clearly shows the proactive approach of the government towards concerns of the industry and to resolve them at the earliest,” EY Tax Partner Abhishek Jain said.Apple’s iPhone in 2019 or iPhone XI as some are referring to it, could come with a 3D camera at the back, indicates a new report from Bloomberg. Rival Huawei, which is the number two smartphone manufacturer in the world, could also adopt something similar, adds the report.
The report is based on how Sony is boosting the production of its next generation of camera chips with support for 3D sensors with potential customers, like Apple showing interest. Sony is already supplying camera sensors to Apple, Google, Samsung, etc, but this generation of camera chips will power both the the front and rear 3D cameras.
Bloomberg‘s report hints that several smartphone makers will adopt a similar 3D camera in 2019, and that Sony will start mass production in late summer to meet demand. The report is quoting Satoshi Yoshihara, head of Sony’s sensor division, who also added that 3D business is already operating profitably.
“Cameras revolutionized phones, and based on what I’ve seen, I have the same expectation for 3D…The pace will vary by field, but we’re definitely going to see adoption of 3D. I’m certain of it,” Yoshihara was quoted as saying.
While he did not identiy the actual customers, the report adds that Huawei is planning to implement 3D cameras in its new models, and is based on people familiar with the matter.
Sony’s 3D camera will use the time of flight approach, which “sends out invisible laser pulses and measures how long they take to bounce back,” explained Yoshihara. Sony claims these allow for more detailed and accurate 3D models.
Apple’s iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XR already have a 3D front camera with the TrueDepth camera, which relies on structured light method to create the 3D models of the user’s and recognise it in the Face ID feature.
Sony’s new 3D camera though will be more accurate than these earlier variants, which are based on ‘structured light’, notes the report. It has also been speculated that a 3D camera could allow for more interactive mobile games. With Apple’s emphasis on augmented reality, this might not be surprising.
Players like Oppo have also shown off phones with time of flight (TOF) sensor. Rumours have also claimed that the Huawei P30 Pro will have a fourth camera, which will be the TOF sensor with support for 3D imagery.