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Service Tax on activities related to Inward Remittance

Earlier, department has issued Circular No. 163/14/2012-ST dated 10th July, 2012 on the issue of levy of service tax on activities involved in the inward remittance. This clarification covers the scenario where the Indian bank/financial institution provides services on principal to principal basis to foreign bank/entity. Taxability of transaction where foreign Money Transfer Service Operator (M
TSO) has appointed Indian Banks/financial entities as agent was left to be clarified.
Now, to clarify taxability of transactions under both scenario’s department has issued Circular No. 180/06/2014-ST dated 14th October, 2014 vide F. No. 354/105/2012-TRU (Pt.) in suppression of Circular No. 163/14/2012-ST dated 10th July, 2012.
Taxability of various transactions related to inward remittances is as under:
S. No.
Whether service tax is payable on remittance received in India from abroad?
No service tax is payable per se on the amount of foreign currency remitted to India from overseas being transaction in money specifically excluded from the definition of service.
Whether the service of an agent or the representation service provided by an Indian entity/ bank to a foreign money transfer service operator (MTSO) in relation to money transfer falls in the category of intermediary service?
Whether service tax is leviable on the service provided, as mentioned in point 2 above, by an intermediary/agent located in India (in taxable territory) to MTSOs located outside India?
Service provided by an intermediary is covered by rule 9 (c) of the Place of Provision of Service Rules, 2012. As per this rule, the place of provision of service is the location of service provider. Hence, service provided by an agent, located in India (in taxable territory), to MTSO is liable to service tax.
The value of intermediary service provided by the agent to MTSO is the commission or fee or any similar amount, by whatever name called, received by it from MTSO and service tax is payable on such commission or fee.
Whether service tax would apply on the amount charged separately, if any, by the Indian bank/entity/agent/sub-agent from the person who receives remittance in the taxable territory, for the service provided by such Indian bank/entity/agent/sub-agent
Yes. As the service is provided by Indian bank/entity/agent/sub-agent to a person located in taxable territory, the Place of Provision is in the taxable territory. Therefore, service tax is payable on amount charged separately, if any.
Whether service tax would apply on the services provided by way of currency conversion by a bank /entity located in India (in the taxable territory) to the recipient of remittance in India?

Any activity of money changing comprises an independent taxable activity. Therefore, service tax applies on currency conversion in such cases in terms of the Service Tax (Determination of Value) Rules. Service provider has an option to pay service tax at prescribed rates in terms of Rule 6(7B) of the Service Tax Rules 1994.
Whether services provided by sub-agents to such Indian Bank/entity located in the taxable territory in relation to money transfer is leviable to service tax?
Sub-agents also fall in the category of intermediary. Therefore, service tax is payable on commission received by sub-agents from Indian bank/entity.
Hope the information will assist you in your Professional endeavors

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