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India slashes tax on several items to 18%
November 11, 2017
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GUWAHATI: The GST rate on 50 items of mass consumption, that were in the 28 per cent tax slab, has been slashed to 18 per cent, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi, who heads the panel of Group of Ministers for tackling IT-related glitches, said on Friday.

“All items of common consumption have been reduced from 28 per cent to 18 per cent tax rate.

“Tax on goods of mass consumption like chewing gum, chocolates, shaving items, shampoo and skin creams, whose revenue implication is not much, has been reduced,” Modi told reporters on the sidelines of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meet here. He further added that the revenue implication of these will be approximately Rs20,000 crore.

Modi said it was important that the system under GST regime stabilises as only four months were remaining for the close of the current financial year.

The 23rd GST Council meeting got underway on Friday at a city hotel under the chairmanship of Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.

The Finance Ministers of at least 24 states of the country participated in the meeting. Some of the states were represented by their Chief Ministers as they hold the Finance portfolio as well.

It is expected that the Guwahati meeting will take a decision about reduction of tax on 150-odd items currently in the 28 per cent slab.

Meanwhile, the rise in India’s factory output slowed in September to 3.80 per cent from a growth of 4.46 per cent in August, official data showed on Friday.

However, on a year-on-year (YoY) basis, the index edged higher by 3.80 per cent when compared to September 2016.

“The cumulative growth for the period April-September 2017 over the corresponding period of the previous year stands at 2.5 per cent,” the “Quick Estimates” of Index of Industrial Production (IIP) said.

India’s economy is expected to grow at its slowest pace in four years in the fiscal year that ends on March 31, a Reuters poll found.

The “panic-stricken govt has no option but to concede demands for change” in the tax, India’s former Finance Minister, P. Chidambaram, said on social network Twitter on Friday.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who chairs the council on the tax, will hold a news conference later on Friday.

Agencies

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