Gems, jewellery industry proposal on duties under consideration: Goyal

The suggestions of gems and jewellery industry related to duties and taxes are under consideration of the Finance Ministry, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said on Thursday.

Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council Chairman Colin Shah has suggested cutting import duty on gold to 4.5 per cent from 12.5 per cent, and on diamond to 2.5 per cent from 7.5 per cent.

Speaking at CII's Gems and jewellery Conference, Shah said that the duty structure is "very high" in the country.

"Your suggestions on right-sizing the duty is under consideration of the Ministry of Finance," Goyal said.

The minister also said that some "aberrations" have happened in the industry which unfortunately have impacted its credibility, particularly when it comes to financing.

He suggested that the industry can play an important role in creating a situation in which lenders get confidence in the sector and participants.

He added that most of the cases that have caused agony to the industry are well known to most of the people in the industry.

By working in partnership with lenders and bankers, the minister said, "We can find solution to the problems of financing that the industry is facing in India."

Further, he said that he will certainly take the issues that Shah has been raising from time to time, particularly on exports, refund of taxes at customs station when goods are being exported, small-packet exports through e-commerce and couriers.

He also suggested the industry to look at self regulation or policy and procedures which should be put in place to ensure orderly behaviour of the industry.

Goyal said the sector, through its consciousness about quality and price competitiveness, has been able to penetrate markets of the US, UAE, Russia, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

"Majority of players in the gems and jewellery sector are MSMEs. We need to come forward to augment their efforts in marketing, packaging logistic and access to low-cost finance. This can be done with joint participation and active involvement of associations from gems and jewellery industry," he said.

The sector contributes about 7.5 per cent to the country's GDP, 14 per cent to the nation's exports and provides employment to over 5 million people, the minister added.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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