Retail in Asia

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India’s jewellers to offer discounts after excise duty rollback

Encouraged by the excise duty rollback, India’s retailers of gold and diamond ornaments are considering offering a 25 percent discount on making charges on all jewellery. Set to begin next week, the first of its kind uniform discount offer from all jewellers across India, would be valid for 10 days nationwide.

While announcing the Finance Bill in Parliament on Monday, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee announced the complete rollback of the excise duty levied on both, branded and unbranded jewellery. Also, the threshold limit on the cash purchase of jewellery worth INR2 lakh (INR200,000, USD3,784) was extended to INR5 lakh, unchanged from the pre-Budget position. The one per cent excise duty on branded jewellery was levied during the Union Budget 2011-12, which was extended to unbranded ornaments in Budget 2012-13. The extension, however, invited widespread protests from the industry resulting in a 21-day strike that cost an estimated business loss of INR20,000 crore (INR200 billion), in addition to INR700-crore tax collection loss to the exchequer.