NEW DELHI: The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs is finalising ways to speed up the refund of Rs 4,000-5,000 crore to micro, small and medium enterprises as finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman gets down to making the entire GST refund process seamless for businesses.
On Friday, Sitharaman had announced that all pending refunds of MSMEs will be cleared over the next 30 days and going forward, no dues will be pending for more than 60 days. On Sunday, she is due to brainstorm with officials from CBIC as well as GST Network, the company that provides the IT backbone, for working out an efficient refund mechanism.
“The GST refunds are not very high but we will clear whatever is the amount,” said an officer. During a meeting in Mysuru on Thursday, Sitharaman had made it clear that the pipeline should not be clogged, pointing out how the flow of refunds should remain. “The clogmaker will be removed. The Modi government doesn’t just sit and watch,” a source quoted her as saying. Refund of GST and payment of arrears by government departments and central public sector companies is a key element of the Centre’s bid to provide sufficient liquidity to small businesses, many of whom have been adversely hit by the cash crunch in the non-banking finance companies. These companies provided a large part of funding to MSMEs.