Bill that paves an ‘e-way’ for seam­less move­ment of goods ..........................................

The roll out of an e-Way Bill sys­tem in the coun­try was an­nounced last year. Through the bill the lo­gis­tics sec­tor will mon­i­tor in­ter-state and in­tra-state move­ment of goods and cut trans­porta­tion time by re­duc­ing loss of time at check posts. In­dus­try exp

Cargo Talk - - Front Page -

Samir J Shah Part­ner JBS Group of Com­pa­nies POSITIVES

Any stan­dard­i­s­a­tion is al­ways good. There could be a time gap for users to adapt to the changes. A sin­gle manda­tory doc­u­ment is the right step in im­prov­ing speed, ef­fi­ciency and ease of do­ing busi­ness. In­dia is a large coun­try; tech­nol­ogy and stan­dards to­gether alone would bring about the de­sired change. If there is a proper mix of tech­nol­ogy and stan­dards the mul­ti­ple states or the cross­cul­tural work­ing styles can­not be im­ped­i­ments in smooth trans­porta­tion. Ease of do­ing busi­ness would ini­ti­ate lesser con­trols and a standard op­er­at­ing process. Tech­nol­ogy would re­place the pro­cesses. Re­duc­tion of pro­cesses re­sults in re­duced hu­man in­ter­face and con­se­quently have lesser chances of mis­in­ter­pre­ta­tion or dif­fer­ent in­ter­pre­ta­tions.

Vi­neet Agar­wal Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, TCI Group POSITIVES

Elec­tronic way bill pri­mar­ily pushed by all states, is an ef­fort to iden­tify the place of con­sump­tion and thus the GST im­pli­ca­tion. This ini­tia­tive will en­able clear vis­i­bil­ity to all the stake­hold­ers boost­ing proper col­lec­tion of GST and avoid any short­cuts. This dig­i­tal doc­u­men­ta­tion process will en­sure ac­count­abil­ity and eas­ier ver­i­fi­ca­tion. Record­ing of ev­ery stock trans­fer and sale will be done through the sys­tem link­ages to phys­i­cal move­ment of trucks and stor­age in ware­houses and there will be trans­parency across all trans­ac­tions.

CHAL­LENGES

Com­ing to the chal­lenges part: ver­i­fi­ca­tion of e-way bill and nec­es­sary doc­u­men­ta­tion can lead to de­lays at var­i­ous points. Se­condly, it is chal­leng­ing for un­or­gan­ised play­ers to get ori­ented to the new sys­tem. The time­line or the va­lid­ity of the e-way bill is not prac­ti­cal in some cir­cum­stances. Fol­low­ing, sev­eral modes of trans­ports are used by E-com re­tail­ers and large com­mod­ity play­ers and man­u­fac­tur­ers for right time de­liv­ery and in such case fresh e-way bill must be gen­er­ated ev­ery time de­pend­ing on the mode of trans­port which will end up main­tain­ing mul­ti­ple bills. Lastly, the process of au­dit and check­ing process is not clear; it may lead to bureau­cratic hur­dles.

Ga­gan­deep S Klaire Di­rec­tor, Ma­jha Trans­port POSITIVES

It been long over­due in im­ple­ment­ing the e- way bill, as the true suc­cess of GST goal would only show post e-way bill im­ple­men­ta­tion. It would also help in widen­ing the tax bracket kitty for the gov­ern­ment even­tu­ally. I don’t feel that there would be prob­lem for a trans­porter in fol­low­ing its com­pli­ances, pro­vided one has al­ways fol­lowed a clean sys­tem­atic in­ter­nal process in orig­i­na­tion.

CHAL­LENGES

Whereas, it does have few fun­da­men­tal prob­lems with re­gard to some of its rule, which would, over a short pe­riod, get clar­ity. Some of them are: dis­tance va­lid­ity of e-way bill re­mains same even if goods are sup­plied through mul­ti­modal trans­port. For ex­am­ple, tiles mov­ing through coastal from Morbi to Kolkata have cur­rent av­er­age tran­sit of 20-25 days, which is well over the time­line given by the gov­ern­ment. I be­lieve there should be some tran­sit va­lid­ity re­lax­ation given to this mode. Prac­ti­cal prob­lems like gen­er­at­ing e-way for goods mov­ing to weigh­ment bridge, con­sid­er­ing the prac­ti­cal dif­fi­cul­ties, the gov­ern­ment should con­sider giv­ing re­lax­ation in such cases.

Vi­neet Kanau­jia Vice Pres­i­dent – Mar­ket­ing Saf­ex­press POSITIVES

E-Way­bill aims to in­crease the trans­parency lev­els in busi­ness in bring­ing down the tax avoid­ance lev­els. Given the vol­ume of sup­ply chain and lo­gis­tics in­dus­try in In­dia, com­pli­ance will be ex­tremely chal­leng­ing to start with. E-Way­bill will en­able dual ben­e­fits of bet­ter and im­proved tax com­pli­ance in the in­dus­try as well as smooth tran­sit of goods through­out In­dia. We wel­come e-Way­bill as it aligns with the decade-old ‘Go Green’ pro­gramme of Saf­ex­press. In our com­pany, re­duced use of pa­per via use of tech­nol­ogy is an im­por­tant part of our goal of re­duc­ing our car­bon foot­print. In my opin­ion, e-Way­bill is a great ini­tia­tive to­wards mak­ing the planet a bet­ter place. The e-Way­bill pro­vi­sion comes as a pos­i­tive change. It will en­cour­age more un­or­gan­ised play­ers to utilise their ve­hi­cles to most op­ti­mised lim­its. Most im­por­tantly, it will pre­vent the un­or­gan­ised play­ers in the lo­gis­tics in­dus­try from evad­ing tax due to proper re­port­ing and com­pli­ance. Saf­ex­press is a tech­no­log­i­cally driven com­pany and has an ad­vanced IT in­fra­struc­ture in place, with over 5500 GPS-en­abled ve­hi­cles con­nected to an ad­vance data an­a­lyt­ics sys­tem for bet­ter en­gage­ment with cus­tomers. Saf­ex­press is well pre­pared to mi­grate to the e-Way­bill busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment.

CHAL­LENGES

As the in­dus­try is still largely un­or­gan­ised in In­dia, en­sur­ing com­pli­ance will be a daunt­ing task for gov­ern­ment.

Shruti Singh COO In­dus B2B Solutions CHAL­LENGES

With the in­tra-state e-way bill now sched­uled to start from Fe­bru­ary 1 in 15 states in­stead of June 1, com­pa­nies said they are not yet pre­pared for the de­vel­op­ment and ex­pect dis­rup­tions in sup­ply chain. While we had pre­pared our sys­tems and stake­hold­ers for the in­ter-state e-way bill from Fe­bru­ary 1, there is un­pre­pared­ness in trade and from our lo­gis­tics part­ners for the in­tra-state im­ple­men­ta­tion of the e-way bill in less than a fort­night in 15 states. This is a big cause for con­cern for us now. Start­ing Fe­bru­ary 1, the e-way bill will any­way be manda­tory for ev­ery in­ter-state move­ment of goods be­yond 10 km with a value of `50,000 and above. Very large vol­umes of e-way bills will have to be sup­ported by the Na­tional In­for­mat­ics Cen­tre (NIC) por­tal, which, many in­dus­try of­fi­cials said, may not be able to han­dle the load. With days left for the roll­out of the in­tra-state e-way on Fe­bru­ary 1, sev­eral lo­gis­tics and e-com­merce com­pa­nies are seek­ing clar­i­fi­ca­tions on the new sys­tem, fear­ing op­er­a­tional in­ef­fi­cien­cies and sup­ply-chain dis­rup­tions. Un­der­stand­ing of the rules by stake­hold­ers in­clud­ing small traders and trans­porters is also a worry. The e-way bills fur­ther di­lute the ben­e­fits ac­cru­ing out of an ef­fi­cient GST model, sim­ply be­cause the match­ing en­vis­aged through the GSTN por­tal has not suc­cess­fully hap­pened.

E-com­merce firms fear a mas­sive load on op­er­a­tional ef­fi­cien­cies and un­due de­lays in de­liv­ery if there is an ad­di­tional gen­er­a­tion of e-way bill be­yond the done when trans­porter comes to pick up ship­ment. The Cen­tral Board of Ex­cise and Cus­toms has is­sued an FAQ clar­i­fy­ing that a sec­ond e-way bill in case of smaller con­sign­ments would not be nec­es­sary. The clar­i­fi­ca­tion has failed to be recog­nised on ground with states such as Kar­nataka and Ma­ha­rash­tra con­tin­u­ing to seek gen­er­a­tion of the bill from trans­porters at state bor­ders.

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