| 03 Oct 2022
Reduce Custom Duty on Radio Broadcasting equipment, remove service tax on radio ads: FICCI asks Govt.

NEW DELHI: The Entertainment wing of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI, in a wish list submitted to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, said customs duty on radio broadcasting equipment should be reduced to 4 per cent especially on transmitters, consoles etc which are not produced in India. It added that there is no justification for the high CVD and additional CVD being charged and India has one of the highest import duty rates for transistors.

FICCI wanted a removal of the service tax on advertisement in Radio since radio competes with newspapers at local level, even though there is no service tax on advertisement on newspapers. This will also provide a level playing field to Radio.

Referring to FM Radio Phase III, FICCI wanted assistance to raise money, provide priority Provide tax holiday for 5 years for new capital investment in Phase III, and provide a fiscal sector lending sector status so that the radio industry has easier availability of finance at with lower interest rates. This was because a large amount of capital is required for the roll out of phase III of FM radio privatisation.

The Telecom sector is already treated as “infrastructure service” and so giving the infrastructure service status to broadcasting will provide a level playing field to the sector.

Broadcasters and distributors will be aided with better and affordable Financing options in the capital-intensive growth phase.

At the outset, FICCi says the Indian media and entertainment industry grew from Rs 821 billion in 2012 to Rs 918 billion in 2013, registering an overall growth of 11.8 per cent. Given the impetus introduced by digitisation, continued growth of regional media, new government formation, strength in the film sector and fast increasing new media businesses, the industry is estimated to achieve a growth rate of 15.3 per cent in 2014 to touch Rs 1059 billion. The sector is projected to grow at a healthy CAGR of 14.2 per cent to reach INR 1786 billion by 2018.

 Television clearly continues to be the dominant segment, but strong growth has been posted by new media sectors, and gaming and digital advertising recorded a strong growth of 25.5 per cent and 38.7 per cent compared to the previous year. The music sector has shown a decreasing growth (-9.9 per cent growth in 2013 over 2012 compared to 18 per cent growth in 2012 over 2011) on the back of strong content and the benefits of digitisation.

Radio is anticipated to see a spurt in growth after the roll-out of Phase III licensing. The benefits of Phase I cable digital access system (DAS) rollout, and continued Phase II rollout are expected to contribute significantly to strong continued growth in the TV sector revenues and its ability to invest in and monetise content.

The sector is expected to grow at a Compounded annual growth rate of 18.1 per cent over the period 2013 to 2018.

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