GST Council meet: Rates of up to 32 products may be reduced

Most handloom and handicraft products that are currently taxed at 12 percent, might be brought under 5 percent bracket.

GST Council meet: Rates of up to 32 products may be reduced

New Delhi: GST council, the apex decision making body on Goods and Services Tax (GST), may consider reduction in tax rates on host of items in its next meeting on July 21.

As per Zee Media sources the Council may reduce rates of upto 32 products in its meeting. The items which could be considered for cutting of tax rates might include sal leaves, idols of gods and goddesses, handicrafts and handloom goods, besides certain services.

Among services, the apex council may decide on tax rates in hotel sector.

Most handloom and handicraft products that are currently taxed at 12 percent, might be brought under 5 percent bracket, sources said. The Council may also decide upon the rates of electronic books and bring them under 5 percent bracket from the existing 18 percent slab.

Sources further said that the GST Council may also discuss on bringing Natural gas under GST though inclusion of ATF (Air Turbine Fuel) seems a remote possibility. Among other important things, discussion on a single GST form will also be one of the major topic that may be taken up in the meet.

Under the Goods and Services Tax regime, there are four rates -- 5 percent, 12 percent, 18 percent and 28 percent. Rolled out on July 1, 2017, GST had subsumed over a dozen local levies and transformed India into a single market with seamless flow of goods.

The all powerful GST Council had, in its meeting in January 2018, decided to slash the GST rate on 54 services and 29 items.

In its November 2017 meeting, the council had removed 178 items from the highest 28 percent category, while cutting tax on all restaurants outside starred-hotels to 5 percent.

In the current fiscal, the collections in April touched a record Rs 1.03 lakh crore, followed by Rs 94,016 crore in May and Rs 95,610 crore in June.

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