As expected, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced plans to boost local manufacturing of electronic gadgets. In his budget speech, Jaitley announced there will be no special additional duty levied on components that go into making personal computers, which was 4 percent earlier. Even CRT tubes; LCD and LED panels below 19-inches as well as components that go into manufacturing LED and LCD TVs will have zero basic customs duty.
However, at the same time, Jaitley’s budget has levied an educational cess on imported electronic products, “to provide parity between domestically produced goods and imported goods.”
In addition to the education cess, the budget also increases basic custom duty to 10 percent of all telecommunication products that are outside the purview of the Information Technology Agreement. So even if the item falls inside the Information Technology Agreement, it will be more expensive due to the additional education cess.