MP demands for deployment of team for the impact of GST in A&N Islands

Port Blair, Oct 23: In response to the demand of Business community, traders, local manufacturers of A & N Islands Mr. Bishnu Pada Ray, Member of Parliament, A& N Islands met with the Secretary(Revenue) Ministry of Finance at New Delhi on 13.10.2017 and highlightedvarious issues like A& N Islands is one of the remotest settlements and isolated from mainland by 1200 Km of sea distance. Considering the unique problems of high cost of freight charges, the UT Islands was tax free, Consequent upon introduction of uniformity of taxation by means of GST, the price index of local construction materials such as Stone boulders, Stone chips, Timber, Still, Sand, Marine products like fish& sea food, Agriculture products such as Copra &arcenut, handicrafts items, bakery items, fabrication items etc, which was earlier being nullified by the regime of “No Tax” in the Island have been substantially increased because of high freight and forwarding cos.
The prices of all Non MRP products including essential commodities of daily necessities have also gone up.The cost of services especially in tourism industry has been also substantially increased because of inception of GST in this UT Islands. Hike of market price on account of GST is an additional financial burden for the Islanders.The Islanders are now paying more cost than the costs are being paid by consumers at mainland towards the essential commodities.Main industry is tourism in this UT Islands and on account of adverse impact high price may lead to decline in tourist visits to these Islands. The tourist may also choose other state and country instead of this island.
In view of the above, the Mr. BishnuPada Ray, Member of Parliament suggested to depute a team to Andaman immediately for study the situation and also to discuss with the Administration in presence of all stake holders, traders and consumers for enabling to submit a comprehensive report to the Ministry of Finance.

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