Tag Archives: GST

Singapore GST – Former Manager of Export Business Jailed for GST Fraud


It was reported in the IRAS’ website on 21 July 2017 that Suneel Ramchandani (“Suneel”), the former manager of Indibiz, an export business for luxury watches and electronic products, has been charged and convicted for making fictitious declarations to enable Indibiz to claim GST refunds totaling $178,314.82.

Suneel’s eight GST evasion charges to defraud the Comptroller of GST occurred over eight accounting periods starting in July 2009. Indibiz initially started as a sole-proprietorship business of Suneel and was converted to a partnership business with one Sreyashi Sengupta (“Sreyashi”) on 16 February 2009. Suneel subsequently withdrew from the partnership on 30 March 2009 and Sreyashi became the sole-proprietor of Indibiz. However, Suneel remained as a manager and person-in-charge of the GST account of Indibiz. With the assistance of Suneel, Sreyashi registered Indibiz for GST purposes with effect from April 2009.

From Jul 2009 to Oct 2010, Suneel had made false entries in the GST returns of Indibiz, to fabricate false input tax claims and zero-rated supplies in order to enable Sreyashi to claim fraudulent GST refunds totaling $178,314.82. Investigations further revealed that a significant portion of the GST refund monies received by Sreyashi arising from the false declarations that had been e-filed by Suneel, was handed over to Suneel.

IRAS’ investigation revealed that Suneel had represented Indibiz and provided IRAS with falsified purchase invoices showing “Indibiz” as the purchaser of the goods when in fact, the purchases never took place.  Other falsified documents included purchase orders purportedly issued by Indibiz, as well as subsidiary export certificates purportedly issued to Indibiz to support the exports for zero-rated supplies, whereby no output tax will be due to IRAS.

Suneel faced a total of eight GST evasion charges for fabricating false claims to willfully assist Indibiz to obtain GST refunds that Indibiz was not entitled to. He pleaded guilty to four out of the eight GST evasion charges, involving a total GST amount of $178,314.82, with the other four remaining GST evasion charges being taken into consideration for the purposes of sentencing. The Court sentenced Suneel to 8 months’ jail and ordered him to pay a penalty of $534,944.46, three times the amount of tax undercharged.

 

What does this mean to you?

It is a serious offence to claim GST input tax on fictitious purchases or understate output tax on sales. Offenders face a penalty of up to three times the amount of tax undercharged, a fine not exceeding $10,000, and/or imprisonment of up to seven years.

If you have any questions, contact support@whm-consulting.com.

Singapore GST – Robotic Ice-Cream Machine Company Director Sentenced to Jail for GST Evasion


It was reported in the IRAS’ website on 6 July 2017 that Robofusion Asia Pte Ltd (“Robofusion”), which is a company in the business of supplying robotic ice-cream kiosks, has been convicted of evading GST  by overstating GST input tax on its GST return. Robert Taramelli (“Taramelli”), the company director, was also convicted for his role in assisting the company to evade GST.

IRAS’ investigations revealed that Taramelli assisted Robofusion to evade tax by maintaining a false record, i.e. by including a false invoice dated 10 Sep 2013 that he had created, purportedly from a supplier, showing GST amounting to $35,667.85, into Robofusion’s taxable purchases listing.  He included the GST amount of $35,667.85 in the amount of input tax claimed in Robofusion’s GST return for the accounting period 1 Sep 2013 to 30 Sep 2013. The false invoice was for the supposed purchase of 10 units of a machine by Robofusion from the supplier for the total amount of $509,540.72.  Investigations revealed that the actual tax invoice, which had the same invoice number, had already been claimed in Robofusion’s GST return for an earlier accounting period ended Jun 2013.

For his offense of willful intent to assist Robofusion to evade tax, Taramelli was sentenced to 6 weeks’ in jail and ordered to pay a penalty of $107,003.55, which is 3X of the GST input tax of $35,667.85.

Robofusion was sentenced to pay a penalty of $107,003.55, which is 3X the amount of GST undercharged, and a fine of $8,000.

If you have any questions regarding the above, please contact support@whm-consulting.com.

Singapore GST – Amendment to the GST Guide for the Aerospace Industry


The IRAS has amended its e-Tax Guide on “GST Guide for the Aerospace Industry” on 19 June 2017 and clarifies the following:

For repairs and modification work to qualify for zero-rating under Section 21(3)(p) of the GST Act, the aircraft or aircraft parts on which they are performed must remain airworthy and the necessary documents specified in paragraph 5.3.1 of the e-Tax Guide are maintained. This is as zero-rating relief is accorded on the basis that the repaired aircraft part would, following the repair or maintenance, form part of a qualifying aircraft. Specifically, for repair and maintenance services performed on aircraft parts which fall under paragraph 5.1(c), if it cannot be proved that the aircraft part remains airworthy following the services performed (i.e. absence of a supporting ARC/COC), zero-rating under section 21(3)(p) would not apply.

This is as zero-rating relief is accorded on the basis that the repaired aircraft part would, following the repair or maintenance, form part of a qualifying aircraft.  Specifically, for repair and maintenance services performed on aircraft parts, if it cannot be proven that the aircraft part remains airworthy following the services performed (i.e. absence of a supporting ARC/COC), zero-rating under section 21(3)(p) would not apply.

If you have any questions regarding the above, contact us at support@whm-consulting.com.

Singapore GST – Amendment to the e-Tax Guide on the Use of Business Premises by Third Party for Free


The IRAS has amended its e-Tax Guide on “GST: Guide on the Use of Business Premises by Third Party for Free” on 19 June 2017 by inserting the following example:

Free Occupation by Canteen Operator Engaged to Provide Canteen Catering Services 

A company has engaged a canteen operator to provide canteen catering services at its premises (i.e. in-house canteen) under a service agreement and pays a fee to the canteen operator in return for his services.  The contract does not grant or assign any lease or license or any right to occupy land to the canteen operator. The operating hours, type of food and drinks to be served in the canteen and the food pricing are generally fixed in the contract.  Where the operations of the company’s business make it necessary for the company to provide an in-house canteen to its employees and the canteen operator is merely occupying the canteen space for the purpose of providing his contracted services to the company, the company need not deem a supply on the free use of canteen space.

If you have any questions regarding the above, contact us at support@whm-consulting.com.

Singapore GST – Public Consultation on the Draft GST e-Tax Guide on Customer Accounting for Prescribed Goods


On 24 April 2017, IRAS has initiated a public consultation exercise to seek feedback from its Draft e-Tax Guide on GST-registered businesses dealing in prescribed goods on the implementation of customer accounting, so as to facilitate a smooth transition into customer accounting come 1 Jan 2018.

What is GST customer accounting?

IRAS is planning to implement GST customer accounting from 1 January 2018 to better address non-compliance relating to transactions of the prescribed goods – mobile phones, memory cards, and off-the-shelf software if the GST-exclusive value of the sale exceeds $5,000 in a single invoice.

If a GST-registered trader makes a taxable supply to a GST-registered customer, it is the GST-registered customer who will account for the output tax on the supply on behalf of the supplier.  At the same time, the GST-registered customer will be bale to claim input tax on this purchase if it is for his business use and the making of his taxable supply.

 

De Minimis Threshold – $5,000

The new Customer accounting requirement is applicable only if the sales of the prescribed goods to a GST-registered customer for his business use exceeds the de minimis threshold of $5,000 in GST-exclusive value..  This means that if the sales do not exceed this threshold, the new Customer accounting requirement will not apply.

The GST-registered supplier should instead standard-rate the supply, account for the GST output tax and issue a tax invoice to his customer as before.

Discounts given on your sales

If a GST-registered supplier offers an unconditional discount on the price of the prescribed goods sold to his GST-registered customer, he should use the discounted GST-exclusive sale value to determine whether his supply exceeds the de minimis threshold of $5,000.

Where there is a contingent discount or delayed reduction in price, the pre-discount GST-exclusive value of the prescribed goods shown on the tax invoice should be used to determine whether the supply exceeds the de minimis threshold of $5,000. 8.2.3 Your supply of prescribed goods to the GST-registered customer will be subject to customer accounting if the discounted sale value or the pre-discount value shown on the tax invoice exceeds $5,000.

A single purchase order with multiple deliveries

For a single purchase order with multiple deliveries, if the GST-registered supplier issues only one tax invoice for all the deliveries, he will use the total GST-exclusive value of the prescribed goods shown in the tax invoice to determine whether the supply exceeds the de minimis threshold of $5,000.

On the other hand, if his normal commercial practice is to issue one tax invoice for each delivery made, such that multiple tax invoices are issued in respect of a single large purchase order, he should determine if customer accounting applies based on the GST-exclusive value on each of the invoices.  However, if he would like to apply customer accounting to all the invoices even though some/all will not exceed $5,000 individually, he can do so provided the GST-exclusive value of the prescribed goods in the single purchase order exceeds $5,000; and both his GST-registered customer and he agree for customer accounting to apply in this manner.

Combined sales of prescribed and non-prescribed goods

When a GST-registered supplier makes a sale consisting of both prescribed and non-prescribed goods to a GST-registered customer, he needs to determine whether the total GST-exclusive sale value of all the prescribed goods sold (whether or not they are of the same type/nature) exceeds $5,000.  The sale value of non-prescribed goods should not be included in this computation.  Upon exceeding the threshold, the GST-registered supplier should apply customer accounting to the sale of the prescribed goods only and not to the non-prescribed goods.

Returned goods

If as a result of the returned goods, the GST-exclusive sale value of the prescribed goods is reduced to $5,000 or below, the GST-registered supplier should issue a credit note to cancel the original sale made under customer accounting and re-issue a tax invoice showing the revised sale value with GST charged (i.e., without applying customer accounting).  He should also collect from his customer the GST chargeable on the revised sale value.

If you have any questions, contact us at support@whm-consulting.com