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Mar 01, 2011, 12.54 PM IST
Gems and jewellery industry today expressed disappointment over reintroduction of 1% excise duty on branded jewellery in the Union Budget and called for a rollback of the decision.
"The reintroduction of the abolished 1% excise duty on branded jewellery is a retrograde step. Five years ago we had made representations to the Government and subsequently the excise duty was withdrawn two years ago," All India Gems and Jewellery Trade Federation Chairman Vinod Hayagriv said.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee has proposed to levy 1% excise duty on branded jewellery and branded articles of precious metals.
This will burden the gems and jewellery industry enormously and hamper its growth, Hayagriv said.
The entire industry, he said, is working towards ethical, transparent trade practices these kind of levies will create hurdles and encourage corruption. "We urge the Finance Minister to rollback the proposed excise duty."
Echoing similar views, Gitanjali Group CMD Mehul Choksi said the decision will have negative impact and create hurdles for jewellery industry in becoming a modern and organised sector. "The one per cent Central excise levied on branded jewellery should be reconsidered."
Choksi said marginal rise in the Minimum Alternate Tax (MAT) to 18.5% from 18% will add to the difficulties being faced by Special Economic Zone (SEZ) developers and units operating in the tax-free trade enclaves.
However, he welcomed the introduction of self- assessment for Customs for import-export and simplification in procedures for refunds as well as exemption from service tax for services consumed within a SEZ.
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