The all powerful GST Council will meet on Sunday to review some of the rates on which industry has expressed displeasure, besides amending the draft rules. This will be the 16th meeting of the Council, chaired by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and comprising state counterparts, since it was set up in September 2016. “Main agenda items include confirmation of the minutes of the 15th GST Council meeting held on June 3, approval of amendments to draft GST rules and rate adjustment, if any, based on the representations received from different trade and industry and their associations,” a finance ministry statement said.
The June 11 meeting would probably be the last one of the Council before the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is rolled out from July 1. Various industry associations have sought a review of the tax rates saying that the GST incidence is working out to be much higher than the present level of taxation. The auto industry has been demanding a review of the GST rate on mid and large-sized hybrid cars which are proposed to be taxed at 43 per cent, higher than the current level of effective tax rate of 30.3 per cent.
Also, the telecom sector has been placed in the 18 per cent tax bracket and they are demanding that the rate should be lowered. COAI has written to Revenue Secretary to review the matter. IT hardware firms are seeking an uniform GST rate of 18 per cent on IT products, like monitors and printers, instead of 28 per cent proposed for some items.
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The GST Council has fitted almost all goods and services in tax slabs of 5, 12, 18 and 28 per cent. However, precious metals, gold coins and imitation jewellery have been fitted in the 3 per cent slab, and rough diamond at 0.25 per cent. The GST, which will subsume a host of levies including excise, service tax and VAT, will be rolled out from July 1.