New Delhi , May 18 : The Group of Ministers, chaired by Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma, met on Wednesday and finalised the method of valuing these services for the purpose of levying this tax.
The Group of Ministers (GoM) on casinos, race courses & online gaming has come to a consensus. The report of our submissions will be handed over to Union Finance Minister .
The panel of ministers tasked to review the GST levy on casinos, race courses and online gaming has finalised its report, which will be taken up in the upcoming GST Council meeting.
The Group of Ministers, chaired by Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma, had in its previous meeting earlier this month unanimously decided on hiking the tax rate on these services to 28 per cent.
The GoM met again on Wednesday and finalised the method of valuing these services for the purpose of levying this tax.
The panel of ministers last met earlier this month and unanimously agreed on imposing 28% GST.
During the meeting, the panel also finalised the method of valuing these services for levying GST.
According to media reports, the panel also agreed that the GST on online gaming should be levied on gross gaming revenue and not on per transaction or on every betting amount. With regards to casinos, the Group of Ministers (GoM) decided that the levy should be on the amount paid while purchasing chips and not on every betting transaction.
Sources were also quoted as saying that the panel also decided to continue with the current practice of levying 28% GST on the entire bet amount for horse racing.
Online games involving betting or gambling attract a GST of 28%, while the rate is 18% for those not involving betting or gambling. On horse racing, GST is levied at 28% on the total bet value. Casinos, on the other hand, currently attract a GST of 18%.
The government had set up the panel to re-evaluate the GST on these services in May last year. The eight-member committee also includes Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, Gujarat finance minister Kanubhai Patel, Goa panchayati raj minister Mauvin Godinho, Tamil Nadu finance minister P Thiaga Rajan, Uttar Pradesh finance minister Suresh Khanna and Telangana finance minister T Harish Rao.
The online gaming industry has been up in arms against the move. IFSG advisor Ratnakar Shetty had told Inc42 that the high taxation regime would negatively impact the nascent online gaming industry, adding that a higher tax burden would make the industry unviable.
Critics have also called for a demarcation between learning-based games and betting games saying that learning-based games should remain in the 18% slab.
Indian online gaming is currently dominated by unicorns such as Dream11, Mobile Premier League, Games24x7, among others.
In March, Games24x7 became India’s 99th unicorn after raising $75 Mn in a funding round led by Malabar India Fund at $2.5 Bn valuation. In January this year, game streaming startup Rooter raised $25 Mn in a Series A round led by Lightbox, March Gaming, Duane Park, among others.
“The Group of Ministers (GoM) on casinos, race courses & online gaming has come to a consensus. The report of our submissions will be handed over to Hon’ble FM, Smti. @nsitharaman Ji in a day or two & the matter will be presented in the next @GST_Council Meeting,” Sangma tweeted.
The Group of Ministers (GoM) on casinos, race courses & online gaming has come to a consensus.
The report of our submissions will be handed over to Hon’ble FM, Smti. @nsitharaman Ji in a day or two & the matter will be presented in the next @GST_Council Meeting @FinMinIndia pic.twitter.com/n3Zm0yHSbl
— Conrad Sangma (@SangmaConrad) May 18, 2022
At present, services of casinos, horse racing and online gaming attract 18 per cent GST.
The government had in May last year set up a panel of state ministers for better valuation of services of casinos, online gaming portal and race courses for levying Goods and Services Tax (GST).
The report of the GoM is likely to be taken up in the next meeting of the GST Council expected later this month.
With Agency inputs