More than 200 items will be cheaper from Wednesday as the government’s new Goods and Services Tax rates come into effect. Several daily-use products, such as chocolates, detergents, personal cosmetics such as shampoos and deodorants as well as furniture will cost less.
The GST Council on November 10 lowered tax rates on 178 items from 28% to 18%. It moved 13 items from the 18% tax slab to 12%, and another six from the 18% to 5% category. Tax on eight items was lowered from 12% to 5%, while six other items were moved from the 5% slab to nil.
Jute, meat and eggs, dairy products such as milk, buttermilk and curd, fresh fruits and vegetables and kitchen staples such as flour, besan, bread and salt are exempt from tax. Printed books, newspapers, and khadi bought from Khadi and Village Industries stores are also on this list, among other items.
Items under the 5% slab include clothes that cost less than Rs 1,000 and footwear below Rs 500, packaged and branded food items, frozen vegetables, coffee, tea and spices, kerosene, coal, medicines, insulin and stents, among others.
Under the 12% slab are items including cellphones, frozen meat products, butter, cheese, ghee, fruit juices, and sanitary napkins, while under the 18% slab are tampons, ice cream, chocolates sauces, soups etc. Cars and motorcycles, home appliances such as dishwashers, washing machines and vacuum cleaners and tobacco products such as bidis and pan masala will be taxed in the 28% slab.
Eating out may also be less expensive, as all restaurants – whether air-conditioned or not – will charge GST of 5%.
The GST Council has been meeting every month since the new tax regime came into effect on July 1. It is headed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
“Many daily-use FMCG products are set to become cheaper as producers have decided to pass on benefits to the consumers,” Care Ratings said, according to The New Indian Express.
A complete list of the GST charged on items is available here.