GST on refrigerators, washing machine reduced to 18%

New Delhi: The GST Council on Saturday reduced tax rates on a slew of items including refrigerators, washing machines and small televisions from 28 per cent to 18 per cent, giving relief to the common man.

Apart of bringing down rates the council also exempted GST on sanitary napkins, rakhis, fortified milk and deities made of stone, marble and wood.

Addressing the media after the 28th meeting of the council, acting Finance Minister Piyush Goyal said: “Refrigerators, small televisions, of upto 25 inches, lithium ion batteries, vacuum cleaners, domestic electrical appliances, such as food grinders, mixers….storage water heaters, immersion heaters, hair dryers, hand driers, electric smoothing irons,” among others have been brought to the 18 per cent slab.

Another significant decision the council made was regarding easing of return filing procedure for small enterprises, the minister said.

Enterprises with annual turnover of upto Rs 5 crore would have to file quarterly returns instead of the current monthly filing, although they would continue to pay tax on a monthly basis.

However, the implementation of the revamped return filing process would take some time, the minister clarified.

Among other tax-reduction decisions, Goyal said, tax rate on handicraft items such as handbags, pouches and purses, jewellery box, wooden frames of paintings and photographs among others have been brought under the 12 per cent slab, from 18 per cent.

GST on handmade carpets and handmade textile floor coverings has been reduced from 12 per cent to 5 per cent.

The tax rate on ethanol, which is used in the blending of petrol and diesel also has been brought down to 5 per cent from 18 per cent.

The minister further informed that the council would have a special meeting on August 4 to address concern of small and medium enterprises.