Consumer electronics players lament no reduction in GST on smart TVs ACs

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New Delhi, Feb 1

 Consumer electronics manufacturers were left disappointed on Tuesday as there was no concession or GST rationalisation on smart TVs and other products in the Union Budget 2022-23.

They had urged the government to reduce the GST rate on colour televisions, which, at 28 per cent for televisions above 32 inches (and 18 per cent otherwise), is inexplicably high.

"From an electronics sector standpoint, we expected reforms in the Union Budget FY 2022-23 that would accelerate growth channelised by consumer demand," said Manish Sharma, CEO, Panasonic India.

"For instance, rationalising GST from 28 per cent to 18 per cent on ACs and large-screen size TVs will improve affordability and penetration as these are no longer considered luxury items. We will look forward to hearing from the GST committee on this," Sharma said in a statement.

India can become the world's third-biggest market for televisions, leading to an estimated growth of 15 per cent in market size, increasing to up to 16 million units annually.

Stressing that the industry needs a stable GST tax slab to boost local manufacturing, Avneet Singh Marwah, CEO, Super Plastronics Pvt Ltd (SPPL), said that despite over-achieving GST collection in the past four months, the tax on smart TVs above 81 cm remains at 28 per cent, which is the highest in any developing economy.

"We were expecting it to be reduced to 18 per cent so that people could get TVs at a cheaper rate. There was also a talk that television would be included in the PLA scheme, which was also missing," he lamented.

The India Cellular & Electronics Association (ICEA) had also recommended a reduction in the GST rate on colour televisions.

"The extremely high GST rate (28 per cent) is stifling the industry. Therefore, we request that the GST rates be rationalised to 18 per cent for both fixed speed air conditioners and inverter-based air conditioners," the ICEA had said.


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