Indian leather exporters recently urged the finance ministry to reduce the rate of goods and services tax (GST) on footwear to boost exports and promote the growth of the sector. The issue was raised by Council for Leather Exports (CLE) chairman PR Aqeel Ahmed at a pre-budget meeting chaired by finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on June 11.

CLE has sought reduction of the GST rate to 12 per cent on footwear priced above ₹1,000, according to a news agency report. GST rate on footwear worth up to ₹1,000 was reduced to 5 per cent, while those above this value still attract 18 per cent GST,

Last year, the commerce minister had announced a ₹2,600 crore package for the leather sector, which employs about 42 lakh people, to boost exports. (DS)