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Budget 2019 Expectations: Lowered GST on automobiles can help economy, says Anand Mahindra

Union Budget 2019 India: The passenger vehicle (PV) sales declined for a seventh straight month in May to 2,39,347 units against 3,01,238 units in the year-ago month.

Budget 2019 India: As the day for 2019 Interim Budget announcement closes in, key players from various industries are voicing their expectations and speculations. Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra recently said that the government must lower GST on automobiles as it would help the economy since the auto industry has a huge multiplier effect on small companies and employment. The Indian automobile industry has been witnessing the steepest decline with passenger car sales dropping by more than 20% – the worst in about 18 years. All vehicle segments including commercial vehicles have taken a negative hit.

In a tweet, Mahindra echoed calls from the auto industry to reduce goods and services tax (GST) on vehicles amid the prolonged sales slump. What we’re all searching for is the Mt. Mandara which can start the Manthan of the economy & get it spinning faster. I’m biased, of course, but the auto industry is one such Mandara. It has a huge multiplier effect on small companies & on employment. Lowering GST would help, he wrote.

Earlier this month, the Society of Automobile Industry (SIAM) had sought reduction of GST on all vehicles to 18 per cent from the current rate of 28 per cent in the upcoming Budget.

The passenger vehicle (PV) sales declined for a seventh straight month in May to 2,39,347 units against 3,01,238 units in the year-ago month. In fact, barring October last year, when sales were up 1.55 per cent, PV offtake has been in the negative in 10 of the last 11 months.

The dip last month is the worst since September 2001, when sales had dropped by 21.91 per cent. All major segments, including two-wheelers and commercial vehicles, witnessed a decline in sales in May, SIAM had said. Vehicle sales across categories registered a decline of 8.62 per cent to 20,86,358 units from 22,83,262 units in May 2018.