In line with the decision of Goods and Services Tax Council (GST Council), the Ministry of Finance on Saturday constituted a Group of Ministers (GoM) to examine GST relief on COVID-19 vaccines and other equipment like medical oxygen, oxygen concentrators, PPE kits, hand sanitisers, among others.
The GoM will be headed by Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad Sangma and will submit its recommendations to the Council by June 8.
The ministry notified the constitution of the GoM with finance ministers of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Odisha and Telangana as its members. Maharashtra Deputy CM Ajit Pawar and Goa's transport minister Mauvin Godinho have also been appointed as members of the GoM.
"The GoM shall examine the need for GST concession/exemption and make recommendation on Covid vaccines, medicines and drugs for Covid treatment, and testing kits for Covid detection, medical grade oxygen, pulse oximeters, hand sanitisers, oxygen therapy equipment such as concentrators, ventilators, generators, PPE Kits, N-95 masks, surgical masks, temperature equipment, and any other items required for Covid relief," said the finance ministry notification.
The rate fitment committee under the GST council had recommended tax cut only on medical grade oxygen, oxygen concentrators, testing kits and pulse oximeters.
The finance minister of states, however, demanded GST reduction in a wide array of products like Covid vaccines, PPE kits, hand sanitisers, among others. Due to lack of consensus on the matter, it was decided to refer the issue to GoM.