The Finance minister announced a service tax for broadcasting services, sound recording, videotape production and on-line information and date retrieval services in view of the growth in these sectors.
The entertainment sector has gained a reduction in customs duty on cinematographic cameras, projectors and related equipment used by the film industry from 25 percent to 15 percent. Also, foreign telecasting channels operating in India will be taxed.
Customs duty on a range of specified IT and telecom products has been reduced from 25 percent to 15 percent. The items include ATMs (automatic teller machines), telephone sets with cordless handsets, teleprinters and telephonic/telegraphic switching equipment including set top boxes, word processing machines, and digital still image video cameras.
A tax concession of 5 percent applicable to specified equipment for basic telephony, cellular, radio paging, PMRTS (public mobile radio trunk services), V-Sat and Internet services, due to expire on March 31, 2001, has now been extended by another year.