Union Budget 2018: Impact on Smartphones in India

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley at Parliament House, in New Delhi | PTI Photo
The entire nation has their eyes set on the fifth and last full-fledged Union Budget in Narendra Modi’s government to be presented in Lok Sabha. This Union Budget will be presented on February 1, 2018, by Mr. Arun Jaitley, our Finance Minister. This Union Budget has a lot of significance as it is presented after two big financial decisions made in Mr. Modi’s government- Demonetization and GST. The previous year’s budget was also very unique as railway budget and general budget were presented on the same day.

Everybody is expecting some statement to be made about their respective sector in this Union Budget. There is anticipation that mobile phones may become cheaper after February 1, 2018.

Union Budget 2018: Smartphones to go cheaper?

Mobile phones are seen in every common man’s possession, especially youth. Youth is expecting cheaper handsets for use. The CEO and Director of COMIO Smartphones, Sanjay Kalirona said that the GST has to be reduced from 12%-5% and offer tax reductions to promote the mobile industry market in India. This should help in making mobiles affordable to the common man, especially youth. All the industrialists are looking up to Union Budget’s support for acceptable budgetary allocation for the growth of the mobile industry.

Relief For Manufacturer of Smartphones?

India is the fastest growing mobile market in the world. The CEO COMIO also mentioned that our country has a lot of potential for component manufacture and building a self-sufficient ecosystem. Mr. Kalirona further stated that if the government supports the manufacturing sector of mobile industry, it would support our Prime Minister’s vision of “Make in India”. The various incentives provided by the government for manufacture sector would help in completing the supply chain cycle and India becoming a manufacturing hub. This is a wishful thinking that manufacture sector should get a lot of incentives and tax reductions for the growth of the mobile market; however, there are speculations that the imported mobile and electronic goods may experience higher rates post-budget. The gadgets may get costlier.

Boost To Make In India, Change in Custom Duty And Import Duty

This year’s budget seems to be in favor of Prime Minister’s “Make in India” initiative and vision, giving a boost, while the imported smartphones and electronic gadgets may get costlier through customs duty rejig, There is also a speculation that certain components used in mobile manufacturing may have the basic customs duty, while printed circuit boards, camera modules, and displays would come under the duty-free category.

There could be changes in the customs duty rules to make India a manufacture hum rather than assembly unit. Therefore the individual components may become expensive and finished goods may face low import duty. The import duty on mobile phones is 15% as on date. There is a possibility to rise further. However, tax experts feel that this is not a good move.

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