In a major revamp under the GST, the Council on Friday slashed tax rates on a host of consumer items such as chocolates, chewing gum, shampoo, deodorant, shoe polish, detergents, nutrition drinks, marble and cosmetics.
“Only 50 items to face 28% rate,” Bihar finance minister Sushil Modi told reporters on the sidelines of the ongoing meeting in Guwahati.
“There were 227 items in the 28% slab. The fitment committee had recommended that it should be pruned to 62 items. But the GST Council has further pruned to more items. Now all types of chewing gum, chocolates, preparation for women cosmetics, shaving and after-shave items, deodorants, washing powder detergent and granite and marble. All these items have been put in the 18% category,” Modi said.
There was unanimity that in 28% category there should be only sin and demerit goods, he added. “So, today the GST Council took a historic decision, that in the 28% slab there will be only 50 items and the remaining items have been brought down to 18%.”
Paints, cement have been retained at 28%, he added. Luxury goods such as washing machine and air conditioners have been retained at 28%.
But mass consumption items have been lowered to 18%, he said.
The decision taken by GST Council will have a revenue implication of Rs 20,000 crore, Modi added. “There is consensus that slowly 28 per cent slab should be brought to 18 per cent. But it will take some time because it has a big revenue implication,” he said.