What is a Continuous Supply of Goods?

Home » Blogs » What is a Continuous Supply of Goods?

Table of Contents

A single and all-encompassing tax structure has been brought about by the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Act, which has completely changed the taxation system. A continuous supply of products is central to this framework since it describes the regular provision of things throughout a given time frame. A continuous supply of commodities is essential in the GST Act because it affects how taxes are reported and imposed for transactions over extended periods. 

This idea adds complexity to the taxation of commodities, and authorities and enterprises must comprehend its subtleties. We will examine the nuances of the GST Act’s definition of a continuous supply of goods in this article, as well as the ramifications and compliance needs related to this essential idea.

What is the Continuous Supply of Goods Under the GST Act?

On July 1, 2017, the Indian Central Government enacted the Goods and Services Tax (GST), often known as the indirect tax reform in India. It is a value-added tax applied to both products and services. It eliminates the need for additional indirect taxes, like CST, VAT, CAD, Service tax, and Excise. In addition, it also waives off the concept of tax on tax.  

Understanding continuous supply of goods GST regulations refers to providing the said goods continuously or recurringly. In this scenario, the supplier builds the customer on regular invoicing per the contract. Similarly, in the case of services, the service provider bills the customer continuously as per the agreed period.

In simple words, supply refers to the taxable event that results in tax consequences in any transaction. Under any tax scheme, it is necessary to understand the tax event or the time of supply of goods GST. This time of supply is the indicator on which the tax will be levied. 

When the tax is levied on the supply of goods or services, it waives the different taxable concepts, such as Excise laws, State VAT laws, and Service tax laws. Unlike past indirect tax systems that imposed taxes on the production, sale, or provision of products or services separately, the total value of goods or services is charged under GST legislation.

Terms Used Under Continuous Supply of Goods GST

Here are a few terms that are used under the continuous supply of goods GST:

  • Continuity

Continuity means a continuous or recurring event of supply of goods. It indicates that the supply is on a recurrent basis.

  • Supply Under a Contract

In this continuous supply, the supply of the goods should be as per the contract. A contract is an agreement between two parties as per law. These can either be written or oral contracts. As per the Indian Contract Act of 1872, oral contracts are also considered valid as per Indian law.

  • Supply Means

It is the mode of supply, which can be anything as agreed by both parties.

  • Issue of Invoice

Under this law, the supplier of the goods must issue invoices to the customer or client regularly and periodically.

Characteristics of Continuous Supply of Goods GST

Here are a few characteristics for an event to be considered as a supply by GST law:

  • The supply should be made of goods or services.
  • It should be taxable.
  • The supply should be made or done by a person who can be taxed.
  • This supply should be made within a taxable territory.
  • Supply made should be in exchange for cash or consideration.
  • It should be made in the interest of expanding business or during doing business.

Decoding Recurrent Supply: Definition and GST Implications

As the name suggests, recurrent means something that happens regularly. Consequently, the regular or continuous delivery of products or services will be the recurrent supply definition. Recurrent supply can occur once a month or multiple times during the same month. However, the only thing that makes it recurrent is its frequency. If the supply only happens once, it is not considered a recurrent supply.

In such cases, the statement or invoices are issued at the time or before the supply of goods. Since it’s a recurring event, the payment terms are also agreed upon between the parties. Depending on the contract terms, the issuance of invoices and payment release can be altered.

What is the Time of Supply of Goods Under GST?
captainbiz what is the time of supply of goods under gst

Time of supply of goods GST is an essential element under the GST law. It is for every transaction that the supplier enters. It refers to the moment at which the provision of products or rendering of services is judged to have occurred to establish the taxpayer’s tax liability. The time of supply can be measured in the following ways:

  • Under Normal Charge

Under the standard charge, the time of supply should be the earliest of the below dates:

  • The invoice issuing date or the last date of invoice issuing.
  • The payment receipt date.

In addition, the following should also be considered:

  • The invoice issue date (at the supplier’s discretion) will be the time of supply for any additional amount received by the provider over Rs. 1,000.
  • Regarding the above two dates, it will be presumed that the supply has been made to the extent that the invoice or payment (whichever comes first) covers it. 
  • If it is the payment receipt date, it should be either the date on which the payment is entered in the accounting books or the date on which the payment is credited to the person.

In simple words, if the invoice date is 15th May 2023, the payment receipt date is 10th July 2023, and the supplier updated the payment on 11th July 2023, the time of supply will be 15th May 2023.

  • Under Reverse Charge

In reverse charge, the tax liability is of the recipient and not the supplier. In this scenario, the earliest of the following dates is considered:

  • Goods receipt date
  • Payment date
  • The day after 30 days from the supplier’s invoice issue date (60 days for services). 

If none of the above can be established, the time of supply will be the entry date in the accounting books of the recipient.

GST Time of Supply of Goods: Section 12 Explained 

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) has significantly changed the taxation landscape in many countries, including India. One crucial aspect of GST is the determination of the time of supply of goods, as it has a direct impact on when tax liabilities arise. Section 12 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act 2017 provides detailed guidelines for ascertaining the time of supply of goods.

The Basics of Section 12

Section 12 of the CGST Act 2017 is primarily concerned with when the liability to pay tax arises concerning the supply of goods. This section is crucial because it helps establish the point at which a supplier must account for and pay GST on the goods supplied.

Time of Supply Under Section 12

  • Date of Issue of Invoice: One of the key provisions under Section 12 is the date of issue of the invoice. When an invoice is issued within the prescribed period, the date is considered the time of supply. However, if the invoice is not issued within the specified period, the time of supply will be determined by other means.
  • Date of Receipt of Payment: If the payment for the supply is received before the issue of the invoice, the time of supply will be the date of receipt of payment. This provision is particularly relevant for businesses where advance payments are standard.
  • Time of Removal of Goods: For situations where the goods are required to be removed before they are supplied, the time of supply is the date of removal. This is relevant for businesses involved in the transportation and logistics of goods.
  • Continuous Supply of Goods: In cases of continuous supply of goods, the time of supply will be determined at the time of each successive issue of the invoice, when a payment is received, or when the goods are removed, depending on the specific circumstances.
  • Date of Entry in Books of Accounts: If none of the above methods is applicable, the time of supply will be the date on which the entry is made in the books of accounts of the supplier. This provision is essential for businesses maintaining accurate and up-to-date financial records.

Examples of Continuous Supply of Goods Under GST

The supply of goods is considered when a transaction occurs and there is a transfer of goods. A simple example of a continuous supply of goods under GST can be buying a pen from a retailer. In this instance, the products are transferred from the retailer to the customer when a client or customer purchases pens. It is seen as a supply of goods since there is a transfer of goods.   

Furthermore, it will be regarded as a supply of goods if there is no transfer of commodities and you continue to use the services. For instance, if you use a transport vendor’s services, the car ownership will stay with the business. However, the services availed will be considered as a supply of goods.

Here are a few examples of continuous supply of goods under GST:

  • Software as a Service (SaaS): In the world of technology, SaaS providers offer continuous access to software and updates. The time of supply in such cases is typically linked to the billing period or when the invoice is issued.
  • Magazine Subscriptions: When individuals or businesses subscribe to magazines for a specified duration, it’s considered a continuous supply. The time of supply occurs at the end of each subscription period or when payment is received.
  • AMC and Maintenance Contracts: Companies often enter into Annual Maintenance Contracts (AMCs) or long-term service agreements for the upkeep of machinery or equipment. The supply is continuous, and the time of supply depends on the terms agreed upon in the contract or when the invoice is raised.
  • Telecom Services: Telecom companies provide continuous services, such as mobile or broadband connections. In these cases, the time of supply typically aligns with the billing cycle or when payment is received.

Understanding GST Time of Supply for Goods and Services


The concept of continuous supply of goods in GST is crucial for businesses involved in long-term, ongoing transactions. The determination of the time of supply in these cases impacts when tax liabilities arise. Businesses must clearly understand the specific rules and provisions that apply to continuous supplies to ensure compliance with GST regulations. As GST laws continue to evolve, staying informed about any changes or updates is imperative for businesses engaged in such supplies. Effective management of continuous supplies not only ensures compliance but also contributes to the smooth operation of businesses in a dynamic tax environment. For more information on the continuous supply of goods, visit CaptainBiz.


  • What exactly is a continuous supply of goods?

A continuous supply of goods means an uninterrupted, long-term transfer of goods under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) system in India.

  • Could you explain some of the terms associated with continuous supply of goods GST?

Indeed, some of the terms commonly used in this context include supplier, recipient, contract, invoice, and payment, and they each have specific meanings and implications in the world of continuous supply of goods.

  • What are the key characteristics that define the continuous supply of goods GST?

The characteristics that set continuous supply apart are things like regular invoicing, ongoing deliveries, and a continuous tax obligation, which distinguish it from standard one-time supply transactions.

  • How is recurrent supply defined in GST, and what impact does it have?

Recurrent supply refers to repeated deliveries under the same contract. It can lead to multiple times of supply and invoicing scenarios, which can affect the tax liability in various ways.

  • When does the time of supply of goods occur under GST?

The time of supply is the point at which GST liability arises. For a continuous supply, it could be determined by the earliest of the invoice, receipt, or completion of the supply, depending on specific criteria.

  • Can you provide examples of what constitutes a continuous supply of goods under GST?

Certainly! Examples include software maintenance contracts, magazine subscriptions, and long-term equipment leasing, where goods are provided continuously over an extended period.

  • Is a monthly subscription service considered a continuous supply of goods under GST?

Yes, a monthly subscription service, where goods or services are provided on an ongoing basis, does fall under the category of a continuous supply of goods according to GST regulations.

  • How are changes in the tax rate handled in the context of a continuous supply of goods under GST?

When there are changes in the GST rate during a continuous supply, adjustments to the tax liability might be necessary based on the applicable rates at different points in time.

  • Are there specific GST rules for businesses continuously supplying goods to government entities?

Yes, there are indeed specific GST rules for continuous supply to government entities. These rules might involve different invoicing and payment processes, as the GST law outlines.

  • What are the compliance requirements for businesses involved in a continuous supply of goods under GST?

Businesses engaged in continuous supply need to ensure they issue timely invoices, make payments, and comply with the GST return filing requirements. This can be complex due to the ongoing nature of these transactions.

author avatar
Nandini Marwah Co-Founder
Nandini Marwah is a seasoned finance writer with a solid academic foundation, holding both a master's and bachelor's degree in economics. She specializes in making complex financial topics accessible to a broad audience. Her passion lies in dissecting macro and microeconomics, particularly delving into consumer behavior and market structures.

Leave a Reply