Senior officials from Coca Cola have reportedly met with India’s chief economic advisor (CEA) Arvind Subramanian, to convey their concerns over a recommended 40 per cent ‘sin tax’ on ‘addictive’ products such as pan masala, tobacco and aerated drinks under the proposed goods and services tax (GST).
As per Business Standard, Venkatesh Kini, President — India and South West Asia, Coca Cola communicated the multinational giant’s concerns over the tax on aerated drinks.
According to the company, the tax goes against the ‘Make in India’ initiative, affecting the entire beverage eco-system from the retailers, distributors, transporters to manufacturers, farmers and raw material producers.
Currently, aerated drinks with added sugar draws a central excise duty of 18 per cent and a state value-added tax of 12.5 per cent, making the total indirect tax at 30.5 per cent.
Coca-Cola declined to comment on the matter. “We unfortunately would not like to comment on the issue,” a company spokesperson said in response to a questionnaire by Business Standard.