GST: Traders body asks FM to lower rates for Horlicks, Complan, butter, sanitary napkins
Ahead of a crucial meeting of Centre and state ministers on goods and services tax (GST), traders’ body CAIT has urged finance minister Arun Jaitley to review the levy on food items including Bournvita, Horlicks, Complan, butter, ghee and sanitary napkins.
The GST Council, headed by Jaitley, will meet on Saturday to finalise the GST rates for some of the pending items before the country’s biggest tax reform is implemented from July 2017.
“Malt-based products like Bournvita, Horlicks, Complan, Boost and AmulPro and other similar products, which are consumed by children, have been placed at 28%. The GST Council should consider a lower rate for these items,” Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) secretary general Praveen Khandelwal told HT on phone.
In a letter to Jaitley, CAIT said the proposed tax rate on tractors and auto spares should be lowered for the interest of farmers.
In case of automobile and tractor spares, he said the GST Council should consider reducing the rate of taxation of auto spare parts from the proposed 28% to 5%.
CAIT also pitched for the tax rate on gold at 2%.
While ghee and butter are mass consumption items, it’s not quite clear why they will be taxed at 12%, he said demanding it to be taxed at 5%. Similar is the case for pickles and sauces, which has been placed under 18%.
Items like turmeric, haldi, zeera and red chilly have been placed under 5% though most of the food items have been placed under exempted category, CAIT said in its letter.
While soaps and toiletries are daily necessity items of mass consumption, CAIT pointed out that the GST rate has been fixed at a higher 18% bracket, which goes against the spirit of the “Swachh Bharat” campaign.
While contraceptives have been exempted, CAIT said sanitary napkins have been kept at 12%.