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Home Acts & Rules Bill Bills FINANCE BILL, 2017 Chapters List Memo Memo Memorandum Explaining the Provisions in The Finance Bill, 2017 This
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D. - MEASURES FOR STIMULATING GROWTH - DIRECT TAXES - FINANCE BILL, 2017

FINANCE BILL, 2017
Memo Memo
Memorandum Explaining the Provisions in The Finance Bill, 2017
  • Contents

D. MEASURES FOR STIMULATING GROWTH

Extension of eligible period of concessional tax rate on interest in case of External Commercial Borrowing and Extension of benefit to Rupee Denominated Bonds

The existing provisions of section 194LC of the Act provide that the interest payable to a non-resident by a specified company on borrowings made by it in foreign currency from sources outside India under a loan agreement or by way of issue of any long-term bond including long-term infrastructure bond shall be eligible for concessional TDS of five per cent.

It further provides that the borrowings shall be made, under a loan agreement at any time on or after the 1st July, 2012, but before the 1st July, 2017; or by way of any long-term bond including long-term infrastructure bond on or after the 1st October, 2014 but before the 1st July, 2017, respectively.

Representations have been received requesting for extension of concessional rate of TDS under sections 194LC of the Act to boost the economy by way of introduction of foreign capital.

Therefore, it is proposed to amend section 194LC to provide that the concessional rate of five per cent. TDS on interest payment under this section will now be available in respect of borrowings made before the 1st July, 2020.

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

Further, consequent upon demand from various stakeholders for granting benefit of lower rate of TDS to rupee denominated bonds, a Press Release dated 29th October, 2015 was issued clarifying that TDS at the rate of 5 per cent would be applicable to these bonds in the same way as it is applicable for off-shore dollar denominated bonds.

In order to give effect to the above, it is further proposed to extend the benefit of section 194LC to rupee denominated bond issued outside India before the 1st July, 2020.

This amendment will take effect retrospectively from 1st April, 2016 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2016-17 and subsequent years.

[Clause 67]

Extension of eligible period of concessional tax rate under section 194LD

The existing provisions of section 194LD of the Act, provides for lower TDS at the rate of five per cent. in the case of interest payable at any time on or after 1st June, 2013 bue before the 1st July, 2017 to FIIs and QFIs on their investments in Government securities and rupee denominated corporate bonds provided that the rate of interest does not exceed the rate notified by the Central Government in this behalf.

Considering the representations received from stakeholders, it is proposed to amend section 194LD to provide that the concessional rate of five per cent. TDS on interest will now be available on interest payable before the 1st July, 2020.

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clause 68]

Carry forward and set off of loss in case of certain companies.

The existing provisions of section 79 of the Act, inter-alia provides that where a change in shareholding has taken place in a previous year in the case of a company, not being a company in which the public are substantially interested, no loss incurred in any year prior to the previous year shall be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year unless on the last day of the previous year the shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power were beneficially held by person who beneficially held shares of the company carrying not less than fifty-one per cent of the voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred.

In order to facilitate ease of doing business and to promote start up India, it is proposed to amend section 79 of the Act to provide that where a change in shareholding has taken place in a previous year in the case of a company, not being a company in which the public are substantially interested and being an eligible start-up as referred to in section 80 -IAC of this Act, loss shall be carried forward and set off against the income of the previous year, if all the shareholders of such company which held shares carrying voting power on the last day of the year or years in which the loss was incurred, being the loss incurred during the period of seven years beginning from the year in which such company is incorporated, continue to hold those shares on the last day of such previous year.

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clause 32]

Extending the period for claiming deduction by start-ups

The existing provisions of section 80-IAC, inter alia, provide that an eligible start-up shall be allowed a deduction of an amount equal to one hundred per cent of the profits and gains derived from eligible business for three consecutive assessment years out of five years beginning from the year in which such eligible start-up is incorporated.

In view the fact that start-ups may take time to derive profit out of their business, it is proposed to provide that deduction under section 80-IAC can be claimed by an eligible start-up for any three consecutive assessment years out of seven years beginning from the year in which such eligible start-up is incorporated.

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will accordingly, apply in relation to assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clause 36]

Rationalisation of Provisions relating to tax credit for Minimum Alternate Tax and Alternate Minimum Tax

Section 115JAA contains provisions regarding carrying forward and set off of tax credit in respect of Minimum Alternate Tax(MAT) paid by companies under section 115JB. Currently, the tax credit can be carried forward upto tenth assessment years. With a view to provide relief to the assessees paying MAT, it is proposed to amend section 115JAA to provide that the tax credit determined under this section can be carried forward up to fifteenth assessment years immediately succeeding the assessment years in which such tax credit becomes allowable. Further, similar amendment is proposed in section 115JD so as to allow carry forward of Alternate Minimum Tax (AMT) paid under section 115JC upto fifteenth assessment years in case of non corporate assessee.

It is also proposed to amend section 115JAA and 115JD so as to provide that the amount of tax credit in respect of MAT/AMT shall not be allowed to be carried forward to subsequent year to the extent such credit relates to the difference between the amount of foreign tax credit (FTC) allowed against MAT/AMT and FTC allowable against the tax computed under regular provisions of Act other than the provisions relating to MAT/AMT.

These amendments will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clauses 46 & 48]

Extension of scope of section 43D to Co-operative Banks

The existing provisions of section 43D of the Act, inter-alia, provides that interest income in relation to certain categories of bad or doubtful debts received by certain institutions or banks or corporations or companies, shall be chargeable to tax in the previous year in which it is credited to its profit and loss account for that year or actually received, whichever is earlier. This provision is an exception to the accrual system of accounting which is regularly followed by such assessees for computation of total income.

The benefit of this provision is presently available to scheduled banks, public financial institutions, State financial corporations, State industrial investment corporations and certain public companies like Housing Finance companies. With a view to provide a level playing field to co-operative banks vis-à-vis scheduled banks and to rationalise the scope of the section 43D, it is proposed to amend section 43D of the Act so as to include co-operative banks other than a primary agricultural credit society or a primary co-operative agricultural and rural development bank.

Consequentially, as per matching principle in taxation, if the interest income on bad or doubtful debts is chargeable to tax on receipt basis, the interest payable on such bad or doubtful debts need to be allowed on actual payment. In view of this, it is proposed to amend section 43B of the Act to provide that any sum payable by the assessee as interest on any loan or advances from a co-operative bank other than a primary agricultural credit society or a primary co-operative agricultural and rural development bank shall be allowed as deduction if it is actually paid on or before the due date of furnishing the return of income of the relevant previous year.

These amendments will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clauses 17 & 18]

Increase in deduction limit in respect of provision for bad and doubtful debts

The existing provisions of sub-clause (a) of section 36(1)(viia) of the Act, inter-alia provides that a scheduled bank (not being a bank incorporated by or under the laws of a country outside India) or a non-scheduled bank or a co-operative bank other than a primary agricultural credit society or a primary co-operative agricultural and rural development bank, can claim deduction in respect of provision for bad and doubtful debts. The amount of such deduction is limited to seven and one-half per cent. of the total income (computed before making any deduction under that clause and Chapter VIA) and an amount not exceeding ten per cent of the aggregate average advances made by the rural branches of such bank computed in the prescribed manner at the end of the previous year.

In order to strengthen the financial position of the entities specified in the sub-clause (a) of section 36(1) (viia) of the Act, it is proposed to amend the said sub-clause to enhance the present limit from seven and one-half per cent. to eight and one-half per cent of the amount of the total income (computed before making any deduction under that clause and Chapter VIA).

This amendment will take effect from 1st April, 2018 and will, accordingly, apply in relation to the assessment year 2018-19 and subsequent years.

[Clause 14]

 
 
 
 
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