New Delhi, August 9, 2017

Frequent changes in rates of goods by the GST Council has upset many states, which have demanded that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley give them time to discuss revenue implications before revising GST levies.

Sources attending the Saturday’s GST Council meeting here said that states such as Jammu and Kashmir have told the finance minister that the fitment committee can not decide on rates all by itself without informing the states which are not its members.

“Frequent revision may have an adverse impact on the economy and may upset the manufacturing plans of industries. It may also question the government’s credibility,” state finance ministers have told Jaitley during the GST Council meeting on Saturday.

So far, the GST Council has revised rates of more than 75 items out of 133. In the last meeting, it also revised rates of 19 services. Not all states are members of the fitment committee which is tasked to revise rates of goods and services.

“You must circulate a paper among the GST Council members and give them time to discuss the rates of goods or services being considered for reduction,” states have believed to have told the finance minister in the Saturday’s meeting.

They said that Jaitley must brief the federal bodies about the revenue impact on them before revising the rates of goods or services. The fitment is considering lowering tax rates on over two dozen products. Some of them have already been revised in the meeting on August 5, others are slated to be taken on September 9, 2017, in Hyderabad.

Rates on textile job works, brooms and brushes and hawansamagri were among revised on August 5. In the next meeting, sources said, some kitchen items and provision is expected to be cheaper. An announcement on upward revision of rates on SUVs and luxury cars is also expected on the September 9 meeting.

[The Deccan Herald]