Business Financials

GST will lower tax burden on medical devices, smartphones: Jaitley

GST will lower tax burden on medical devices, smartphones: Jaitley

New Delhi: The Goods and Services Tax (GST) will lead to lower tax burden in several commodities, including packaged cement, medicaments, smartphones and medical devices, the Finance Ministry said on Tuesday.

“Packaged cement attracts central excise duty of 12.5 per cent plus Rs 125 PMT (per metric tonne) and standard VAT (value-added tax) rate of 14.5 per cent. At these rates, the present total tax incidence works out to more than 29 per cent.

“If we include tax incidence on account of central sales tax (CST), octroi, entry tax, etc., the present total tax incidence would work out to more than 31 per cent. As against this, the proposed GST rate for cement is 28 per cent,” the ministry said here in a statement.

There will be lesser tax burden in case of medicaments, including Ayurvedic, Unani, Siddha, Homeopathic or Bio-chemic systems also.

Medicaments, in general, attract six per cent central excise duty and five per cent VAT. Further, CST, octroi, entry tax, etc. are also applicable in general. At these rates, the present total tax incidence works out to more than 13 per cent.

As against this, the proposed GST rate on medicines, including ayurvedic medicines, is 12 per cent.

Smartphone attracts two per cent central excise duty (one per cent excise duty + one per cent NCCD (national contingency and calamity duty). VAT rates vary from state to state from five to 15 per cent.

“Weighted average VAT rate on smartphones works out to about 12 per cent. Thus, the present total tax incidence on smart phones works out to more than 13.5 per cent. As against this, the proposed GST rate for smartphones is 12 per cent,” the statement said.

Similarly, medical devices, including surgical instruments, in general attract six per cent central excise duty and five per cent VAT. Along with CST, octroi, entry tax, etc., the present total tax incidence on them works out to more than 13 per cent. As against this, the proposed rate under GST is 12 per cent, it said.

Worship materials including that required for ‘havan’ will be under the nil category. However, exact formulation for the same is yet to be finalised.

–IANS