Introduction

The Central Board of Excise and Customs (hereinafter referred to as “CBEC”) which deals with formulation of policy concerning levy and collection of Customs & Central Excise duties and Service Tax is going to be re-named as the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (hereinafter referred to as “CBIC”).[1] This is in furtherance to the roll out of Goods and Services Tax (hereinafter referred to as “GST”) with effect from July 1, 2017.

About CBEC

CBEC is a part of the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance, Government of India. In addition to dealing with Customs & Central Excise Duties and Service Tax, it plays a significant role in the prevention of smuggling and administration of matters relating to Customs, Central Excise, Service Tax and Narcotics to the extent under its purview. Further, CBEC is the administrative authority for its subordinate organizations, including Custom Houses, Central Excise and Service Tax Commissionerates and the Central Revenues Control Laboratory.

Proposals in CBIC

The existing functions of CBEC will be re-organised to implement and enforce the provisions of GST. A circular[2] dated May 13, 2017, was issued by the Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance wherein the structure of the CBIC was provided. Some of the proposed changes are as follows:

  1. The CBIC will be headed by the Chairman and shall be assisted by 6 members in various departments including but not limited to GST, IT, Legal, Investigation.
  2. There shall be 21 GST zones, 102 GSR Tax Service Commissionerates, 49 Audit Commissionerates and 50 GST Appeal Commissionaerates.
  3. The existing custom zones, Custom Commissionerates and Customs Appeals Commissionaerates shall continue as such under CBIC.
  4. Two new Directorates shall be created- Directorate General of Analytics and Risk Management and Directorate of International Customs.
  5. The existing Directorate General of Central Excise shall be renamed as Directorate General GST Intelligence. It will have pan-India jurisdiction and will be responsible for preventing and detecting tax evasion.
  6. The National Academy of Customs, Excise and Narcotics will renamed as National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics. It will provide regular training to officers and staff of CBIC and also state GST officers.

In view of the above, it is envisaged that various acts like Central Boards of Revenue Act, 1963 and Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 will have to be amended to replace the name of departments whose names have been changed.