Exempt jewellery from excise net, cut levy on machinery

Written by fe Bureau | Mumbai | Updated: Jun 30 2009, 06:51am hrs
The All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation (GJF) has called for removal of excise duty on branded and unbranded jewellery and reduction of duties on consumables and machinery.

It also suggested the import of gold under Open General Licence (OGL) and sought permission from the Centre to import gold in any form/purity. The GJF also stated that VAT should be rationalised and setting up of refineries in India by private businesses should be allowed. For the promotion of the sector, the suggestions included conducting a national fashion festival and an exhibition of jewellery craft from every state.

Last week, the GJF met the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) in Mumbaigovernment to partner GJF to improve jewellery industry. In a day-long meeting in Mumbai chaired by chairman, C Vinod Hayagriv and immediate past chairman, Ashok Minawala, GJF presented a detailed plan for the modernisation and standardisation of the 2,000-year old traditional trade.

C Vinod Hayagriv, chairman, GJF said The Federation is planning to grow at 17% in the next three years from 8% at present. For this, we need support from government. The industry is highly fragmented and these are times when we need to identify the trade as an industry. Modernisation is required, which will happen in the form of education.

The federation also presented the need for duty free import of educational equipment for the industry should be permitted while education and training should be brought in for gemologists and jewellers at all levels.

On the financial front, the government should provide low cost and higher funding for jewellers, allow a presumptive tax on turnover as an option in lieu of normal income tax and increase mandatory audit limits to Rs 2 crore.