Arun Jaitley rules out single GST rate, says further rationalisation possible


New Delhi: It is juvenile politics to link GST rate rationalisation with elections or political demand, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Monday.

He further ruled out single tax rate of GST, saying those seeking single rate have no understanding of tariff structure.

Finance Minister also said that there is scope for further rationalisation of GSTrates. Revenue buoyancy will decide the course of rationalisation, he added.

“This rationalisation is 3-4 month exercise,” FM said, adding that the GST Council decided on the rate cut on the recommendation of a Fitment Committee.

The decisions in the GST Council are “all consensus decisions,” he said. “This is really juvenile politics to link it with either elections or political demands”.

In the biggest GST rejig yet, tax rates on over 200 items, ranging from chewing gum to chocolates, to beauty products, wigs and wrist watches, were on Friday cut to provide relief to consumers and businesses amid economic slowdown.

As many as 178 items of daily use were shifted from the top tax bracket of 28 percent to 18 percent, while a uniform 5 percent tax was prescribed for all restaurants, both air- conditioned and non-AC, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said after the GST Council meeting.

The all-powerful GST Council pruned the list of items in the top 28 percent Goods and Services Tax (GST) slab to just 50 from current 228. So, only luxury and sins goods are now only in highest tax bracket and items of daily use are shifted to 18 percent.