Kerala Budget 2018: Liquor lovers in Kerala are set to face a tough time in days to come after the announcement of the state Budget today. The government is going to increase the tax on alcohol as it gears up to levy 210% tax on Indian-made foreign liquor.
Kerala Budget 2018: Liquor lovers in Kerala are set to face a tough time in days to come after the announcement of the state Budget today. The government is going to increase the tax on alcohol as it gears up to levy 210% tax on Indian-made foreign liquor. According to Indian Express, the state currently receives an annual revenue of Rs 12,000 crore from liquor sales. Notably, there were attempts to introduce prohibition in the state a couple of years ago and, as of now, only hotels rated 3 stars and above can open bars.
As per the announcements made by Finance Minister Thomas Isaac during the presentation of Kerala Budget 2018-19 at the Assembly, the prices of liquor would go up in Kerala. The tax on liquor priced up to Rs 400 would be 200 percent, and the tax on liquor worth above Rs. 400 would be 210 percent, said the finance minister. Meanwhile, the tax on beer has been increased from 70 percent to 100 percent. The tax rate on foreign-made liquor and wine has been revamped as 78 percent and 25 percent respectively.
The new base price of foreign-made foreign liquor would be Rs. 6,000 per case without import duty and that of foreign-made foreign wine would be Rs. 3,000 per case. However, in a cheer for the liquor industry, Kerala State Beverages Corporation (BEVCO)has now been granted permission to sell foreign liquor too.
The rise in liquor prices is not going to be good news at all for liquor consumers in the state and the numbers are large – the state inked record sales during the Christmas season last year! Liquor sales during Christmas season in Kerala clocked a new record, netting over Rs 195.29 crore, an increase of nearly Rs 38 crore over the previous year. According to an IE report, four days ahead of the festival, Kerala bought over Rs 160 crore worth of booze from over 330 retail outlets of the state-run corporation. BEVCO, the sole vendor of Indian Made Foreign Liquor in both the wholesale and retail markets, recorded a sales turnover of Rs 195.29 crores through its 330 outlets from December 21 to 24.