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Indian government to introduce 3-tier value-added tax structure (VAT) from April 1, 2005. New tax regime is no different from the excise duty structure. While the excise duty is imposed on manufacture, the VAT is imposed on the point of sale.

The VAT, will cover around 550 goods, of which a large number of commodities will fall in the 12.5 per cent tax rate. Another 270 items will attract 4 per cent duty, and tax of 1 per cent will have to be paid on gold and silver ornaments. It has also been decided to exempt 46 products from the new tax, with 10 items to be decided by individual states and the rest being common across the country.

All tax-paid goods bought during the last 12 months but remaining in stock on April 1 would also be eligible for input tax credit. Further, units located in export oriented units (EOUs) and special economic zones (SEZs) will be granted either exemption from payment of input tax or a refund of the input tax paid within three months.


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