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Indian-made mobiles to be cheaper

Indian-made mobiles to be cheaper

The interim budget may be out, but what does this mean to you? For starters, mobiles made in India are to get cheaper as excise duty on them has been reduced (for now).

The interim budget may have had many talking points, but one of the biggest is the reduction in excise duty. If you are thinking on buying a mobile phone, it may soon be a good time to do that. These provisions will remain till the general elections take place in May and the new government puts forth its budget after that.

The budget allows for just one per cent excise duty on handsets made in India, while those manufactured abroad will continue to attract an excise duty of six per cent. P Chidambaram has said that the excise duty for all categories of mobile handsets will be now be 6% with central value-added tax (CENVAT) credit, or 1% without CENVAT credit.

What this means is that mobile phones which are manufactured in India, regardless of its brand, will see a price moderation as the Finance Minister looks to boost domestic manufacturing of consumer products.

The interim budget has added an excise duty on mobiles costing less than Rs2,000, which was earlier absent. This means that cheap, entry-level devices will invariably cost more unless the next budget changes this provision.

This reduced duty only applies to cell phones manufactured in India, so if the phone you want isn’t made in India you won’t receive this benefit. Mobile phone makers such as Nokia and Samsung, which manufacture their range of phones in the country will be able to take advantage of paying a lower excise duty of 1% and hence pass on the benefit to customers.

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