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Bamboo binds NE in GST Council meet

Bamboo binds NE in GST Council meet

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  12 Nov 2017 12:00 AM GMT

FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT

Itagar, Nov 11: Bamboo has became the binding thread for the entire Northeastern states in the 23rd GST Council meeting at Guwahati on Friday as the council has agreed to the proposal forwarded by state Deputy Chief Minister Chow Mein to reduce the rate on Bamboo & Cane furniture from 18 to 12 per cent.

It was an achievement for the state as Mein’s proposal was accepted and overwhelmingly supported by all the states of North East.

Though the proposal was made by Aruchal Pradesh, it would not only benefit the State but all the Northeastern states equally. As a large numbers of tribal populations of the state depend on bamboo for their livelihood, Mein proposed to exempt the tax on raw bamboo and reduce the rate on bamboo & cane furniture from 18 to 12 per cent.

He said that bamboo is an intrinsic part of the social fabric and tribal way of living for the tribes of Aruchal Pradesh. He informed the Council that bamboo and cane is used as building materials right from the house construction to the numerous domestic purposes and in crafts making.

He further said that bamboo was exempted in the VAT regime, as it has local importance, as poor people earn their livelihood by selling bamboo and its products. However, with the implementation of GST and levying tax @ 5 per cent on bamboo and 18 per cent on bamboo and cane furniture, the local industry has been badly affected and local people have an apprehension that it would affect their livelihood too, he said.

He requested the Council to exempt raw bamboo and cane and reduce the tax to 12 from 18 per cent on bamboo and cane furniture to relieve the poor people of the state as they depend on the production and consumption of these commodities.

The deputy chief minister said that bamboo cultivation reduces the pressure on timber and if bamboo and cane industry was not patronized then illegal deforestation would increase as wooden furniture also attracts 18 per cent GST, an official report informed here today.

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