Turf authorities seek to lower GST on horse racing

Posted On 02 Mar, 2019 0

The Turf Authorities of India (TAI), which is the apex body concerning horse-racing has just made a written appeal to Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal to reduce the GST rates on horse-racing. TAI currently has 6 race clubs within its umbrella.

The main concern of TAI is that horse-racing, due to high GST rates implemented on it, is gradually dying. Currently 28% GST is imposed on it which is huge and incidentally the same rate that’s been applied to the lottery business. As a result, both the industries are gradually dying, a concern that’s been for long in the lottery industry, but something that’s been taken up the horse-racing industry now as well.

TAI made a presentation to the FM on 14th February wherein it expressed its concerns about the adverse impacts of 28% GST and presented objections to various persons in GST notifications and have requested for their removal.

The body said the GST should be calculated on commission and not on the total amount bet. The body also cited Supreme Court which, in one of its decisions, mentioned that horseracing is a game of skill. Winning depends predominantly on skill and doesn’t amount to gambling, therefore such a high GST on it isn’t justified.

TAI also added that the total amount wagered is not the income of the club as it is liable to be paid back to winners from its dividends. It said that the race clubs are like a stock broker or forex dealers. TAI also supported its claim by citing some statistics.

It said that 28% GST has badly hit collections. In the pre-GST era, collection for 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 was INR 3,274 Crores, INR 3,611 Crores and INR 3,954 Crores respectively. And the taxes applicable were INR 252 Crores, INR 278 Crores and INR 305 Crores respectively.

The above statistic, when compared to 2017-18 earnings show a drastic impact. Just INR 2,219 Crores were collected by the industry and the applicable tax amounted to INR 186 Crores. TAI also forecasted the 2018-19, 2019-20, 2020-21 to be INR 1,917 Crores, INR 1,438 Crores, INR 1,078 Crores respectively.

It can clearly be seen, if TAI’s figures are to be believed, that GST has adversely affected the business so far and lessening it would make a great deal of change to then industry. Keep reading GutshotMagazine.com for more such news and for general poker gambling/gaming news from around the world.

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