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Borrower of Securities liable to discharge GST under Reverse Charge Mechanism: CBIC [Read Circular]

By Abdullah Karuthedakam -

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs ( CBIC ) has issued Clarification regarding taxability of supply of securities under Securities Lending Scheme, 1997.

Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has prescribed the Securities Lending Scheme, 1997 for the purpose of facilitating lending and borrowing of it. Under the Scheme, lender of which lends to a borrower through an approved intermediary to a borrower under an agreement for a specified period with the condition that the borrower will return equivalent securities of the same type or class at the end of the specified period along with the corporate benefits accruing on the which borrowed. The transaction takes place through an electronic screen-based order matching mechanism provided by the recognised stock exchange in India. There is anonymity between the lender and borrower since there is no direct agreement between them.

The purpose of GST Act, “securities” shall have the same meaning as assigned to it in clause (h) of section 2 of the Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act, 1956 [Section 2(101) of CGST Act]. The definition of services as per Section 2(102) of the CGST Act, is extracted as below: –

“services” means anything other than goods, money and securities but includes activities relating to the use of money or its conversion by cash or by any other mode, from one form, currency or denomination, to another form, currency or denomination for which a separate consideration is charged; Explanation.––For the removal of doubts, it is hereby clarified that the expression “services” includes facilitating or arranging transactions in securities;

In a Circular issued by CBIC said that, The activity of lending of securities is not a transaction in securities as it does not involve disposal of securities. The clause 4 of para 4 relating to the Scheme under the Securities Lending Scheme, 1997 doesn’t treat lending of securities as disposal of securities and therefore is not excluded from the definition of services.

The Circular also said that, “The lender temporarily lends the securities held by him to a borrower and charges lending fee for the same from the borrower. The borrower of securities can further sell or buy these securities and is required to return the lended securities after the stipulated period of time. The lending fee charged from the borrowers of securities has the character of consideration and this activity is taxable in GST since 01.07.2017”.

The CBIC clarified that, “The supply of lending of securities under the scheme is classifiable under heading 997119 and is leviable to GST@18% under Sl. No. 15(vii) of Notification No. 11/2017- Central Tax (Rate) dated 28.06.2017 as amended from time to time”.

“For the past period i.e. from 01.07.2017 to 30.09.2019, GST is payable under forwarding charge by the lender and request may be made by the lender (supplier) to SEBI to disclose the information about borrower for discharging GST under forward charge. The nature of tax payable shall be IGST. However, if the service provider has already paid CGST / SGST / UTGST treating the supply as an intra-state supply, such lenders shall not be required to pay IGST again in lieu of such GST payments already made”.

While Concluding the Circular the CBIC also said that, “With effect from 1st October, 2019, the borrower of securities shall be liable to discharge GST as per Sl. No 16 of Notification No. 22/2019-Central Tax (Rate) dated 30.09.2019 under reverse charge mechanism (RCM). The nature of GST to be paid shall be IGST under RCM”.

To Read the full text of the Circular CLICK HERE