After GST rate cut on some 88 common use items has come into effect from Friday i.e. July 27, 2018, Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister in a Facebook post expressed his hope of bringing other items such as ACs, large screen TV sets, cement etc. to a lower tax rate slab in light of the increasing revenue.
In the post, Jaitley said, "The other items outside the luxury-sin goods category are cement, air-conditioners, large screen televisions and a handful of others. Hopefully, with further expansion of revenues, these few items may also witness a change of category".
In its July 21st meet, which was for the first time chaired by interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal, GST Council slashed the GST rate of few of the white goods including fridge, washing machine, small screen TV sets from the erstwhile 28% slab rate to 18%. Also other common use items such as footwear priced below Rs. 1000 will now attract 5% tax as against 18% which was charged for footwear with a retail sale price of over Rs. 500.
The recent rate rationalization measure by the Council has left only 35 items under the highest tax slab rate of 28%. Jaitley said, "....within a record period of thirteen months, the GST Council has almost phased out the 28% category. It is only a matter of time that the final obituary of the 'Congress Legacy Tax' is written. Only the luxury-sin tax would remain".
"If the entire category of all the slabs is taken, the past one year has seen a reduction of tax in 384 commodities with no increase on a single product. India has never witnessed such mass tax reduction since Independence," Arun Jaitley said. Also he added that the GST implementation and subsequent tweaks in its framework has resulted in "lesser rates and higher collection". The next GST Council meet is scheduled for August 4.