NBA urges govt to remove 18% GST on broadcast ads

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 14, 2020 Published on April 14, 2020

The News Broadcasters Association (NBA) requested the Finance Ministry to remove 18 per cent GST on advertisements on broadcast media or reduce it to 5 per cent, bringing it at par with the print media.

In a letter written to Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, NBA President Rajat Sharma stated that the operating costs of news broadcasters have gone up exponentially, during the lockdown period, as the country grapples with the Covid-19 pandemic.

"You will appreciate that advertisements are an integral and essential part of the business and the main source of revenue for the news broadcasters which has come under severe pressure during this pandemic/lockdown. Advertising agencies are putting huge pressure to defer the payments to broadcasters and to allow more time over and above the 60 days credit period; the recovery of bills is going to be hugely challenging, while facing an even bigger task of almost zero or negligible income in the next 30-90 days," the letter stated.

The industry body stated that while the news broadcasters are coping with the financial problems of recovery of dues, they are also facing serious challenges in terms of selling ad inventories as release orders are getting cancelled. "Poor recovery and lack of future income would mean that the news broadcasters would have to weather the storm for two/three quarters and hope for a partial recovery towards the end of the financial year," NBA stated in its letter.

"In these trying circumstances, as part of the stimulus package, we request you to kindly remove the 18 per cent GST on advertisements or reduce it and bring it in par with the print media industry i.e. at 5 per cent, " NBA stated adding that news genre has been recognised as essential services by various States and the Central government. Currently, selling of space for advertisement in print media attracts 5 per cent GST.

Published on April 14, 2020

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