The Central Board of Indirect Taxes ( CBIC ) said that, Goods and Services Tax ( GST ) exempted for maritime courses conducted by the Maritime Training Institutes of India approved by Directorate General of Shipping.
Under GST Law, vide Sl. No. 66 of the notification No. 12/2017- Central Tax (Rate) dated 28.06.2017, services provided by educational institutions to its students, faculty and staff are exempt from levy of GST. In the above notification, “educational institution” has been defined to mean an institution providing services by way of education as a part of a curriculum for obtaining a qualification recognised by any law for the time being in force.
GST exemption on services supplied by an educational institution would be available if it fulfils the criteria that the education is provided as part of a curriculum for obtaining a qualification/ degree recognized by law.
In order to streamline and monitor the maritime education and training by maritime institutes and to administer the assessment agencies, the Merchant Shipping (standards of training, certification and watch-keeping for Seafarers) Rules, 2014 has been notified. Under Rule 9 of the said Rules, the Director-General of Shipping is empowered to designate assessment centres. Further, the provisions of sub-rules (6), (7) and (8) of Rule 4 of the said Rules, empowers the Director-General of Shipping, to approve (i) the training course, (ii) training, examination and assessment programme, and (iii) approved training institute etc.
In a Circular issued by the CBIC clarified that, the Maritime Training Institutes and their training courses are approved by the Director-General of Shipping which are duly recognised under the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 read with the Merchant Shipping (standards of training, certification and watch-keeping for Seafarers) Rules, 2014 are educational institutions under GST Law and the courses conducted by them are exempt from levy of GST. The exemption is subject to meeting the conditions specified at Sl. No. 66 of the notification No. 12/ 2017- Central Tax (Rate) dated 28.06.2017. The CBIC also clarified that, “This clarification applies, mutatis mutandis, to corresponding entries of respective IGST, UTGST, SGST exemption notifications”.