Home Business There is still no consensus among finance ministers on this important tax...

There is still no consensus among finance ministers on this important tax issue.

An official said the panel is unlikely to reach a consensus this month. (Representative)

New Delhi:

A panel of Indian state finance ministers is yet to submit its report on taxation of the booming online gaming sector, which is crucial to a final decision, a senior government official said today.

The panel has been deliberating for weeks on how it should tax online gaming companies — and whether the federal tax should be imposed only on the firms’ profits or on the value of the entire pool of money collected from participants.

The panel is unlikely to reach a consensus this month, the official told reporters in New Delhi.

Real-money online games have become hugely popular in India, prompting foreign investors such as Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital to back local gaming startups Dream11 and Mobile Premier League, popular for their fantasy cricket games.

Any decision on this will depend on the availability of the report in the upcoming meeting of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council of India on December 17, which is yet to be finalised, the official said.

India is also separately working on federal regulations for the gaming sector, which research firm Redseer estimates will be worth $7 billion by 2026, impacted by real-money games.

The planned rules will apply to all real-money games, Reuters reported on Sunday, after the Prime Minister’s Office rejected a proposal to regulate only games of skill and leave out games of chance.

The official said that during the December 17 meeting of the GST Council, the panel of federal and state finance chiefs will also discuss decriminalizing tax laws by raising the threshold for prosecution.

The official said a separate government panel tasked with rationalizing GST rates is also discussing the 18% tax levied on health insurance.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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