New Delhi: The government may consider reducing customs duty on certain medical devices in the budget 2019 with an aim to boosting domestic manufacturing of such goods, sources said.
The move would also help promote the government's ambitious Make in India initiative, said the source.
Industry chamber CII in its has pre-budget memorandum has asked the government to reduce customs duty from 10 per cent to 2.5 per cent on PDS Plates used for nasal reconstructive surgery.
It has also asked to exempt the duty on instruments for joint replacement and spinal equipment. "Reduction of basic customs duty on PDS Plates to 2.5 per cent would reduce the cost and benefit the patients," CII has said.
The government has recently set up National Medical Devices Promotion Council (NMDPC) to boost manufacturing, attract investments and promote exports of the fast-growing sector.
Medical devices include any instrument, apparatus, appliance, implant, material or other article, whether used alone or in combination, including the software intended by its manufacturer to be used specially for human beings or animals for one or more of the specific purposes.
India has achieved a major global position in the pharmaceutical sector. However, the same has not been replicated in the medical devices industry.
Currently, 100 per cent FDI is allowed under the automatic route in the medical devices sector to encourage manufacturing of equipment.
The government would present the Budget 2019 on February 1.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley missed the customary 'halwa' ceremony, which is held at the Finance Ministry every year to mark the beginning of printing of the budget documents. After this ceremony, officials and staff working around the budget are not allowed to leave the Ministry premises till the presentation of the budget.
Jaitley is said to be undergoing medical treatment in the US and will return to India to present the budget on February 1.
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Updated Date: Jan 21, 2019 18:33:03 IST