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GoM suggests cut in GST on Covid relief material to 5 per cent

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ET BureauAn eight-member group of ministers (GoM) set up to decide Goods and Services Tax reduction on Covid relief materias has recommended that the GST on vaccines be determined by the GST Council and has therefore referred the matter back to the Council, said people aware of the details.

“The GST Council should decide the rate on vaccines, it has been recommended by GoM,” a senior official said, asking not to be named. The GST Council will have to meet again to take a decision on this aspect.

The GoM, headed by Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma, has further suggested reduction in GST rates of Covid relief material to 5% on items including medical grade oxygen, oxygen concentrators, pulse oximeters and Covid testing kits, the official added.

Exemption for drugs related to treatment of black fungus has also been recommended.

The GST Council had exempted the imports of mucormycosis drug Amphotericin B from the tax in its last meeting held on May 28, but had decided to set up the GoM to look into exemption from the levy for Covid-19 vaccines and other medical products related to treatment of the disease. The GoM was given time till June 8 to submit its report.

The GoM was set up after several states in the GST Council meeting sought for complete tax waiver on Covid-related vaccines, medicines and other materials and equipment.

The fitment committee of the GST Council had last month recommended reduction in the items to 5% till July, and till August for Covid-19 testing kits. It had not recommended any change in rate of PPE kits, hand sanitisers, ventilators, N95 surgical masks and ambulances.

( Originally published on Jun 07, 2021 )


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