Decisions to ’’stabilise’’ cement prices likely to be reversed

Decisions to ’’stabilise’’ cement prices likely to be reversed
Published: 27 September 2006

The government is likely to reverse all its earlier decisions taken to stabilise cement prices by withdrawing freight subsidy of Rs 60 per bag and restoration of rebate on cement export to Afghanistan, sources in Central Board of Revenue (CBR) told Business Recorder.

"The government should have to choose one option as subsidies on both import and export cannot be in place at the same time," sources quoted Finance Ministry officials as saying.

He said that the government has considered all circumstances, which include price situation in different parts of the country, capacity utilisation, and the loss inflicted to local industry due to subsidised imports, and has recommended to the government that to protect the hard won cement export market, exemptions of central excise duty (CED), GST and duty drawback on exported cement may be restored. Presently, import of cement is allowed at zero customs duty and zero withholding tax from all countries including India.