The government has allowed fertiliser companies to print revised maximum retail price (MRP) by including the new GST rate on existing unsold stocks of about 10 lakh tonnes, with some riders. The companies have been given three months till September to clear the unsold stocks by stamping or printing the new retail price. Last week, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on fertilisers was reduced to 5 per cent from 12 per cent in the interest of farmers. The lower GST will bring down retail prices.
“The consumer affairs ministry has given exemption to fertiliser companies to print or stamp the MRP on unsold stock by incorporating the new GST rate,” a senior fertiliser ministry official told PTI. The companies have been asked to declare revised MRP by way of stamping or putting sticker or online printing, as the case may be, after complying with some conditions, he said. Among the conditions specified, the companies have been asked not to overwrite revised price on the existing MRP, which should be continued to remain displayed.
That apart, the difference between retail price originally printed on the package and the revised price should not be higher than the extent of increase in the tax or in the case of imposition of fresh tax on account of implementation of GST tax and Rules, the official added. The manufacturers and importers should create awareness among farmers of this change in newspapers by publishing the revised rate on unsold stock.
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Retail price of urea, which is fixed by the government, is at Rs 5,360 per tonne now. The prices of DAP and potash, fixed by private companies, are at Rs 22,000 and Rs 11,000 per tonne, respectively. With GST rate kept lower, the prices of these soil nutrients will come down. The country produces 24-25 million tonnes of urea, widely used as fertiliser, and imports 7 million tonnes to meet the shortage.