New Delhi, Dec 22: With an eye on 2019 general elections, the Government on Saturday reduced Goods and Services Tax on 17 items and six services.
The new tax rates would be applied from January 1, 2019 and would impact Rs 55,000 crore revenue of the Government, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told a press conference after 31st GST Council meet here. Mr Jaitley said, “All items except cement has been removed from 28 per cent tax slab. Only cement which is a common man item remains under 28 per cent slab. There was a total consensus that something should be done on this and it would be taken under the next meeting.”
He said there was no GST reduction on luxury or sin items. The Government removed only seven items from 28 per cent tax slab. Six items such as pulleys, transmission shafts and cranks, gear boxes which fall under HS Code 8483, monitors and TVs of up to screen size of 32 inches, re-treaded or used pneumatic rubber tyres, power banks of lithium ion batteries, digital cameras and video camera recorders and video game consoles and other games and sports requisites falling under HS code 9504 would now attract 18 per cent GST.
He said lithium ion batteries are already at 18 per cent slab but one battery was left in this category. It will include that one also. This will bring parity in GST rate of power bank and lithium ion battery.
Parts and accessories for the carriages for disabled persons which earlier used to come under the 28 per cent tax slab would now attract 5 per cent GST, he added.
The Minister added that there has been a lot of discussion on GST on cinema tickets. “After consultations, it has been decided that GST rate on cinema tickets above Rs 100 shall be reduced from 28 per cent to 18 per cent and on cinema tickets upto Rs 100 from 18 per cent to 12 per cent. The movies are mass entertainment medium and would impact 900 crore revenue.”
The Government has also slashed GST rate on third party insurance premium of goods carrying vehicles. It shall be reduced from 18 per cent to 12 per cent. The air travel of pilgrims by non-scheduled or charter operations, for religious pilgrimage facilitated by the Government under bilateral arrangements should attract 5 per cent GST in economy class and 12 per cent on business class.
He said services supplied by banks to Basic Saving Bank Deposit (BSBD) account holders under Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY) shall be exempted from the GST.The Minister said three items of corks -- cork roughly squared or debagged, articles of natural cork and agglomerated cork -- would now be charged 12 per cent tax from earlier that of 18 per cent.
The items which are moved under the 5 per cent tax slab are marble rubble, natural cork, walking stick and fly ash blocks while people have to give no tax on music books, vegetables, (uncooked or cooked by steaming or boiling in water), frozen, branded and put in a unit container and vegetable provisionally preserved (for example by sulphur dioxide gas, in brine, in sulphur water or in other preservative solutions), but unsuitable in that state for immediate consumption.
Mr Jaitley said GST rate of 5 per cent rate has been prescribed on renewable energy devices and parts for their manufacture.
He said certain disputes have arisen regarding GST rates where specified goods attracting 5 per cent GST are supplied along with services of construction etc and other goods for solar power plant. To resolve the dispute the Council has recommended that in all such cases, the 70 per cent of the gross value shall be deemed as the value of supply of said goods attracting 5 per cent rate and the remaining portion of the aggregate value of such EPC contract shall be deemed as the value of supply of taxable service attracting standard GST rate.
The Government also extended date of filing annual return from March 31, 2019 to June 30, 2019.(UNI)