July 12, 2016

GST should be imposed on renewable equipment imports

Power Ministry is not pitching for keeping renewable energy equipment out of the purview of proposed GST but wants a level-playing field for domestic manufactures, Union Minister PiyushGoyal said.

“Ideally we should put GST (rate) on imports so that it becomes a level-playing field and domestic manufacturing are not at disadvantage. Today there is an inverted (duty) structure. Domestic (manufacturers) are paying more taxes than imports,” Goyal, the Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister, said.

He was replying to a query whether the Power Ministry has proposed to keep renewable energy equipment out of the GST regime. The proposed Goods and Services Tax law, which seeks to subsumes all central and state levies including excise, service tax and sales tax, is stuck in the RajyaSabha.

Speaking on the idea of keeping the renewables out of GST, Goyal said, “Some manufacturing people did talk to me. I do’t think we should keep it out of GST. My approach is different.

We have to create a level-playing field. So, GST (rate) should be on imports (of renewable).” Asked whether his ministry has made any proposal over the same, he said, “To the best of my remembrance, I do’t think I would have asked for something like that. I believe that we should keep minimum distortion in the GST regime.” Pitching for passage of the GST bill, the minister suggested that there is a need to build a pressure so that the GST is cleared in this Monsoon session of Parliament beginning on July 18, 2016.

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