The Centre has raised import duty on gold and silver and coins to 15 per cent through five per cent Agriculture Infrastructure Development Cess (AIDC), a notification of Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs stated. The move is aimed at curbing the misuse of lower import duty on certain types of gold and silver.
According to the notification, “gold or silver findings” means a small component such as hook, clasp, clamp, pin, catch, screw back used to hold the whole or a part of a piece of jewellery in place.
The finance ministry also hiked import duty on spent catalysts containing precious metals. The duty has been hiked to 14.35 per cent including 10 Basic Custom Duty (BCD) and 4.35 per cent AIDC (Agriculture Infrastructure Development Cess) with exemption from SWS.
The move aims to prevent circumvention of the duty on gold and silver bars, a government official told Reuters, after a surge in imports in the last two months of gold findings.
During the 2021-22 budget, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced an agriculture infrastructure and development cess (AIDC) on specified goods including alcoholic beverages, gold, silver, cotton, peas, apple, petrol, and diesel.
“There is an immediate need to improve agricultural infrastructure so that we produce more, while also conserving and processing agricultural output efficiently. This will ensure enhanced remuneration for our farmers. To earmark resources for this purpose, I propose an Agriculture Infrastructure and Development Cess (AIDC) on a small number of items. However, while applying this cess, we have taken care not to put additional burden on consumers on most items,” the finance minister had said in her budget speech.
The government had imposed a 2.5 per cent AIDC on Gold, Silver and dore bars.
(With PTI inputs)