IGST Refund against Exports of Goods from India


Dated: 22.10.2021

IGST Refund against Exports of Goods from India

As per rule 96 of the CGST Rules, 2017, the shipping bill filed by an exporter shall be deemed to be an application for refund of integrated tax paid on the goods exported out of India and such application shall be deemed to have been filed only when-

(a) the person in charge of the conveyance carrying the export goods duly files an export manifest or an export report covering the number and the date of shipping bills or bills of export; and

(b) the applicant has furnished a valid return in FORM GSTR-3 or FORM GSTR3B, as the case may be. Thus, once the shipping bill and export general manifest (EGM) is filed and a valid return is filed, the application for refund shall be considered to have been filed and refund shall be processed by the department. There is no need for filing a separate refund claim as the shipping bill filed by the exporter is itself treated as a refund claim.

As per CGST Rules, refund of IGST is not possible to an exporter if:

  • They have availed of duty drawback on CGST, SGST or IGST. However, they may claim a refund of IGST if they have availed of drawback on basic customs duty 
  • They obtained Inputs at a concessional rate of 0.1%. In such a case, export cannot be with payment of IGST but must be executed through LUT/bond
  • They imported inputs under the Advance Authorization scheme. Here too, the final product must be exported under LUT/bond and not with payment of IGST. (Advance Authorization is an export incentive that allows duty-free import of inputs required in making products for export) 

Also reference may be taken from the Board Circular No. 16/2019-Customs. The Customs officer at the port of export shall proceed to process the IGST refund as per the instructions. Circular may be refer from the CBIC website (www.cbic.gov.in).

IGST refund claim gets stuck if- 

Non-transmission of data: As mentioned above, GSTN won’t transmit data to Icegate if the details in forms GSTR-1 and GSTR-3B don’t match.

Data mismatch on Icegate: If Icegate finds a mismatch between the returns data transmitted by GSTN and the shipping bill details, you will receive one of the following error codes in response to your application:

Response Code Response Description Contact Person

SB000 Successful Kindly contact custom location to scroll generation

SB006: Gateway EGM not available. If the EGM is not filed/ filed incorrectly, supplementary EGM needs to be filed by Shipping Line and approved by Gateway Port Officer. If the EGM is already filed, please revalidate the EGM from respective Custom Location.

SB002: EGM not filed : Exporter may approach the Shipping Lines to file the EGM immediately. If EGM is already filed by shipping Line correctly, Please contact Customs location to Revalidate EGM by EGM Officer.

SB001 Invalid SB Details For any further help on how to amend an invoice on GST System, please contact the GST Helpdesk. Your Shipping Bill validation is failed at ICEGATE System with error code SB001 – the combination of SB Number, SB
Date and Port Code in the invoice transmitted from GST System doesn’t match the details given in the shipping bill. You may amend the invoice details on the GST System.

SB005 Shipping Bill’s have been rejected with error code SB005 (Invalid Invoice Number). You are advised to refer the Customs Circular Board`s Circulars 5/2018-Cus. dated 23.02.201808/2018 and Circular No. 05 /2021-Customs dated 17.02.2021 and approach respective Customs Location for manual validation of Shipping Bills.

SB104 Port code is not valid. Contact GSTN helpdesk

SB003 Invalid GSTN ID Contact GSTN helpdesk

SB009 SB is Cancelled Kindly contact to respective location

SB005, SBV00 Manually validated Kindly contact custom location to scroll generation

SB004, SBV00 Manually validated Kindly contact custom location to scroll generation

When all data points match, Icegate returns an SB000 (Successfully Validated) response code and assigns an IGST scroll number to the eligible shipping bill. You can use this number to check the status of your claim on Icegate on IGST Scroll Sanctioned Status.    

Grant of Provisional Refund

The category of persons making zero rated supplies will be entitled to provisional refund of 90% of the claim in terms of Section 54(6) of CGST Act, 2017. Rule 91 of CGST Rules, 2017 provide that the provisional refund is to be granted within 7 days from the date of acknowledgement of the refund claim. An order for provisional refund is to be issued in Form GST RFD 04 along with payment advice in the name of the claimant in Form GST RFD 05. The amount will be electronically credited to the claimant’s bank account. Rule 91 also prescribe that the provisional refund will not be granted if the person claiming refund has, during any period of five years immediately preceding the tax period to which the claim for refund relates, been prosecuted for any offence under the Act or under an earlier law where the amount of tax evaded exceeds two hundred and fifty lakh rupees.

Export with payment of IGST

Exporters can claim the refund of IGST paid at the time of export. The GST refund process for exports in case of goods begins by taking reference to a primary document known as a shipping bill. The shipping bill and other export-related documents should be filed on the Indian Customs Electronic Commerce Gateway (ICEGATE).  
GSTR-1: GST refund process for exports continues on the GST portal in the form GSTR-1. These details are declared in GSTR-1 under Table ‘6A – Exports Invoices’. The details required in this table are as follows:

  • Invoice date 
  • Port code 
  • Shipping bill no./bill of export no. 
  • Shipping bill date/bill of export date 
  • Total invoice value and taxable value 
  • GST payment (‘With Payment of Tax’ needs to be selected) 
  • Whether the supply is eligible for tax at a differential percentage, as notified by the government
  • The tax amount auto-populated but can be edited

Care must be taken to ensure that all the details declared in this table match with the corresponding details declared in the shipping bill. In the case of export of services, fields at 2, 3, and 4 will be left blank.  In case of deemed exports, the invoice will be uploaded as a normal B2B invoice in Tables 4A, 4B, 4C, 6B, 6C – B2B invoices. When entering invoice details, the checkbox for ‘Deemed exports’, ‘SEZ Supplies without payment’ or ‘Sale from bonded warehouse’ may be selected, as applicable.

GSTR-3B: Further, the GST refund process for exports will involve declaration in GSTR 3B too. The relevant amounts need to be filled up in Table 3.1(b)- ‘Outward taxable supplies (zero-rated)’. The IGST amount entered here should be either equal to or greater than the total IGST filled in Table 6A of the corresponding GSTR-1. 

Form GST RFD-01: GST refund process for exports will need the filing of a form RFD-01 (completely online) in particular cases only.

(1) Export of Goods: In the case of export of goods with payment of tax, there is no separate refund application required as the shipping bill itself will be treated as the refund application. The details entered in Form GSTR-1 will be matched with the details mentioned in the shipping bill as filed with ICEGATE. The ICEGATE will then process the refund and credit the same to the bank account as mentioned by the taxpayer on its portal. 

(2) Export of Services: A separate refund application in RFD-01 is required. Such taxpayer needs to login to the GST portal and selecting Services > Refunds > Application for Refund > Export of Services with payment of tax > RFD-01. The details relating to the export of services will need to be uploaded using the offline utility. The amount of refund and the bank account number in which the refund is to be credited will also need to be provided. On successful filing, an Application Reference Number (ARN) will be generated, which can be used to track the status of the refund application.

Export without payment of IGST

GST refund process for exports, in this case, involves a different document. The option to export goods without payment of tax can either be used under the cover of a Letter of Undertaking (LUT) or a bond. In such a case, any ITC accumulated on inputs/input services unutilised will be available for refund. The option of LUT is available only for a select number of exporters satisfying a prescribed criterion. The procedure is similar to the export of services.

Form GST RFD-11:The LUT can be filed in Form GST RFD-11 on the common portal by accessing Services > User Services > Furnish Letter of Undertaking (LUT). The necessary details are filled in and uploaded along with the digital signature as per the LUT filing procedure. GST refund process for exports will not be complete without this filing. In case of a bond, it must be executed manually on a stamp paper, signed and submitted to the jurisdictional Deputy/Assistant Commissioner along with the relevant documents like Form RFD-11 on the letterhead of the taxpayer, bank guarantee, authority letter, etc. The Jurisdictional Deputy/Assistant Commissioner, after inspection of the documents submitted, will issue a signed letter acknowledging the same.  

Form GST RFD-01: Similar to the GST refund process for exports in case of tax payment, taxpayers should use this form. The details in relation to ITC attributable to zero-rated supply needs to be entered and submitted on RFD-01 (completely online). The taxpayer should confirm if RFD-11 is filed. Upload relevant documents and affix the digital signature to submit the form and an ARN gets generated for tracking.  The process of declaration of invoices in Form GSTR-1 is the same except that in the GST Payment field, ‘Without payment of tax’ needs to be selected.  

GST refund process for exports under the new return filing

The GST refund process for exports and refund application in RFD-01 and RFD-11 will remain the same under the new GST return system. There is a change in the reporting of export details in the return. Following are the forms used to report refund details on exports.

Form ANX-1: GST refund process for exports under new GST returns will begin with ANX-1. In this form, the invoice details of the exports are to be uploaded in Table ‘3C – Exports with payment of tax’ and Table ‘3D – Exports without payment of tax’ depending on whether the IGST is paid or not in respect of the supply. For a tax period, all such export invoices must be reported on which the shipping bills/bill of export are available till the date of filing the GST returns i.e, the 20th of the next month for monthly filers or 25th of the month following the quarter for quarterly filers. The rest will be reported in the next tax period. The details required in this field would be as follows:

  • Document details (invoice, credit or debit note, serial number, date, value) 
  • HSN code (at the six-digit level) 
  • Tax rate and taxable value 
  • Relevant tax amounts (in case the export is made with payment of tax) 
  • Shipping bill/bill of export (no. and date) 

FORM  RET-1: GST refund process for exports under the new GST returns system will continue with the declaration in RET-1. The value and the tax amounts in relation to the exports declared in ANX-1 will be auto-populated in Table 3A (row 3 and 4) for outward supplies. Hence, the taxpayer just needs to verify the same and not re-enter the details.  

New amendment return introduced: The amendment to the export details whether or not with payment of IGST, can be done in ANX-1A that will amend the original annexure ANX-1 submitted for a tax period- either monthly or quarterly. It can be done by referring to the original details. These will be auto-populated to RET-1A. Note that the amendment is not allowed on the export documents on which refund is already successfully claimed. On the other hand, those export invoice details missed declaring in prior periods can be reported in the current period’s ANX-1 itself.

Process Flows of the Refund Process:


Download the copy below:

Board Circular No. 16/2019-Customs:

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