Mobile phones to be costlier due to increase in import duty

Mobile phones to be costlier due to increase in import duty

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After the announcement of the Union Budget for 2013-14 in India, by the finance Minister P Chidambaram, mobile phones are expected to become expensive. The finance minister said that for phones which cost up to Rs. 2,000, the import duty will remain the same, while the import duty on devices above Rs. 2,000 will be 6 percent.

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Earlier, the import duty was just 1 percent, which was based on the maximum retail prices. Chidambaram, in his speech said, “About 70 percent of imported mobile phones and about 60 percent of domestically manufactured mobile phones are priced at 2000 or below. Mobile phones enjoy a concessional excise duty of one percent and I do not propose to change that in the case of low priced mobile phones.”

However, the bad news is that most phones these days cost above Rs. 2,000. Even a Micromax phone begins from Rs. 4,000 and the high-end smartphones like the Galaxy S series, HTC, Nokia Lumia and Apple are expected to be priced at more than Rs. 30,000.

Apart from mobile phones, the government has also raised the import duty on set top boxes, from 5 percent to 10 percent, in order to safeguard the interest of domestic producers.