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India’s Broadcasting Foundation has asked the country’s finance ministry to only levy a 5 per cent goods and services (TVA) tax on TV and cable subscriptions. This would be about half of the rate to be applied.
India is due to start collecting the TVA on April 1st 2017, the first national tax and would replace similar taxes applied by regional governments. The proposals were passed into law last August as the country’s 101st Amendment.
“It is important that the government recognises TV services which has evolved over the years as a product/service of mass consumption to be classified and categorised under the item of mass consumption having a GST rate of 5 per cent so that it becomes affordable to masses. Not only does it provide infotainment, entertainment and influence public opinion, but unlike the other mediums, it is not constricted by level of literacy and is education agnostic,” ZEEL MD and IBF president Punit Goenka said in a statement.
Goenka said that India’s 120 million subscribers would then not be penalised when compared to print or other non-broadcast media.