New Delhi [India], May 1 (ANI): Amid the acute shortage of medical oxygen in several parts of the country due to surge in COVID-19, the Finance Ministry on Saturday reduced the Integrated Goods and Services Tax (IGST) rate on the import of oxygen concentrators for personal use from 28 per cent to 12 per cent.
The reduced IGST rate will be applicable till June end.
"IGST on import of oxygen concentrators for personal use has been reduced from 28 per cent to 12 per cent to bring IGST rate on such personal imports at par with commercial imports of the same. This reduced IGST rate for imports of concentrator for personal use shall be applicable up to June 30, 2021," said the Ministry of Finance notification.
Meanwhile, the government revised the Foreign Trade Policy, 2015-2020 and permitted the import of oxygen concentrators for personal use amid a massive surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.
An official press release from the ministry of commerce and industry stated that oxygen concentrators have been added to the list of exempted categories, where customs clearance is sought as ''gifts".
These oxygen concentrators can be procured through post, courier or e-commerce portals. The exemption for oxygen concentrators is allowed till July 31, 2021, for personal use, according to a notification of the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) issued on Friday.
The healthcare system in India is overburdened due to the second wave of COVID-19 cases in the country and there is a shortage of beds, medical oxygen and medicines.
The country reported over 4 lakh new COVID-19 cases and 3,523 deaths in the last 24 hours, as per the Union Health Ministry. (ANI)