In a major relief for consumers, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council decided to slash tax rates on several consumer durables like televisions, air conditioners, refrigerators, washing machines, video games, trailers and inverters.
Interim Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal also announced that sanitary napkins are now 100 percent exempt from tax, from the previous 12 percent. A high GST rate on sanitary napkins imposed last year had triggered howls of protest from consumer activist groups.
GST Council today approved reduction in rates of 88 goods and services. Money in the hands of all sections of society – the poor, households, women, farmers and senior citizens.#GoodandSimpleGSThttps://t.co/6AkfDghLzU
— Piyush Goyal (@PiyushGoyal) 21 July 2018
The new rates will come into effect from July 27.
The #GSTCouncilMeet decisions has brought in transformative changes to GST rates across 88 goods and services in India. Reduction in GST rates from 28% to 18% on various goods announced will benefit citizens from all walks of life. #GoodandSimpleGST pic.twitter.com/CZjF3MYdVh
— Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) 21 July 2018
Here’s a list of all key decisions made at the 28th GST Council meeting:
1. Rates for 17 consumer goods including washing machines, refrigerators, TVs, video games, vacuum cleaners, trailers, juicer mixer, grinders, shavers and hair dryers, water coolers, water heaters, lithium-ion batteries and electric iron slashed from 28 percent to 18 percent.
2. GST rate of 18 percent will be applicable on TVs up to 68 cm (27 inch) in size
3. Small handicraft exempted under GST
4. Deities made of stone, marble and wood exempted under GST
5. Rakhis exempted under GST
6. Knitted caps or otherwise under Rs 1,000/Unit now at 5 percent
7. Ethanol for oil companies now under 5 percent slab
8. Footwear under Rs 1,000 now under 5 percent slab
9. Actual bill of hotel stay above Rs 7,500 will attract 28 percent GST. Actual hotel bill below Rs 7,500 will, however, attract only 18 percent GST
10. Fortified milk will be exempted from GST
11. Rates on paints, wall putty and varnish down to 18 percent from 28 percent
12. Perfumes, toilet spray now under 18 percent slab
13. GST on handbags, jewellery box, wooden box for paintings, artware of glass, stone endeavour, ornamental framed mirrors, handmade lamps etc reduced to 12 percent
14. Simpler return filing process approved. Quarterly returns for business turnover up to Rs 5 crore instead of monthly filings. However, tax payment will be monthly. Nearly 93 percent traders and small businesses will get benefited from this. Exemption limit for traders in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Himalaya, Sikkim, increased from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 20 lakh
15. No decision on sugar cess, to be decided in next meeting
— Piyush Goyal Office (@PiyushGoyalOffc) 21 July 2018
The GST Council will meet next on August 4 to discuss the problems faced by small traders and businesses and entrepreneurship. The meeting will be completely focussed on the MSME sector, Goyal said.