‘Continue optional system for excise duty’
A year of economic slowdown and long hours of power cut have had an impact on the industries in this region and across sectors, the units are looking forward for the Union Budget to provide relief and financial support.
The industrial associations have submitted the pre-budget memorandum to the Union Government. The textile units have appealed to the Union Government to continue the existing optional system for excise duty. They have also said that the 8 per cent excise duty on shuttleless looms should be removed. The Government is giving thrust to the powerloom sector in the XII Five Year Plan and those who are modernising the units from the basic powerlooms should be permitted to import second hand shuttleless looms, says S. Dinakaran, chairman of the Southern India Mills’ Association. Adequate funds should be allocated for the Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme (TUFS) so that all the sanctioned projects and those that were unable to benefit when the scheme was revised could also get financial assistance from it.
Coimbatore is one of the major hubs in the country for gold jewellery manufacturing. The jewellery makers have said that import of jewellery from other countries should be stopped. The Government has permitted duty free import of jewellery from Thailand. This will affect the jewellery making units here.
Further, gold jewellery was recently covered under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. This will affect the jewellery trade and manufacturing. The Government should cover all trades under the Act, says B. Muthu Venkatram, president of Coimbatore Jewellery Manufacturers’ Association.
The Coimbatore District Small Industries’ Association has said that the micro, small and medium-scale units need one year moratorium for repayment of loans. “The economic conditions are not good and the sector needs a stimulus package,” says the association president R. Ramachandran. Some banks are supporting the units with additional loans and time to start repaying the amount. The Credit-linked Capital Subsidy Scheme should be expanded to more products and should be extended for this year too, he says.
President of the Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Coimbatore, R.R. Balasundaram says, implementation of the Goods and Services Tax is important for the trade and industries. Since the service tax provisions have undergone a change and more services are covered, “a more pragmatic approach should be adopted to extend the benefit of input service credit,” he said.
The builders have sought implementation of standard contract conditions across the country. The service tax for project contracts is 4.8 per cent and for smaller constructions it is nearly 12 per cent. There are disputes that can be avoided and the contract will help bring about standardisation, says K. Viswanathan, vice-president of Builders’ Association of India.
President of Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India, Coimbatore, P. Karthikeyan, says the property developers should be recognised as part of the construction industry and infrastructure developers. The recognition will benefit the developers, he says.