1. Agriculture World

LATEST BUDGET 2020: Higher Duty on Import of Fruit & Vegetable Pulps

Tooba Maher
Tooba Maher

The CII or industry body Confederation of Indian Industries has announced important increase in import duty of fruit and vegetable pulps and concentrates. This has been done to safeguard interests of farmers.

The CII in its Pre-Budget Memorandum has informed, "Customs Duty on import of fruit/vegetable pulps and concentrates must be enhanced substantially to levels prevailing for commodities like coffee (100 %), tea (100 %), garlic (100 %), rice (80 per cent), millets (70 %) etc."

The requirement for protecting the interests of our apple and orange growers is even more paramount. Although, the customs duty rates on import of these fruits is higher (apple at 75 % and orange at 40 %), yet farmers continue to suffer as the beverage industry prefers to import these fruits in concentrate form.

Concentrates can be imported at lower rates (apple concentrate at 50 % and orange concentrate at 35 %), CII mentioned in its Pre-Budget memorandum.

CII also added, "The importers are thereby benefitting not only from the lower customs duty, but also by incurring lower freight costs by way of importing the fruits in concentrate form rather than import of whole fruit."

Duty on import of fruit and vegetable pulp and concentrates should be increased to at least 3 times the duty rate applicable for the respective fruits, demanded by CII in its Pre-Budget memorandum.

CII has also recommended continuation of 10 % peak rate of customs duty for the year 2020-21 in order to provide a level-playing field to the indigenous industry which suffers from disadvantages such as higher rate of interest, land and power.

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