Two weeks ago, following the 39th GST Council meeting on March 14, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that the Government of India has decided to increase the GST rate on mobile phones and specified parts. Back then, the government confirmed that the new GST rates would applicable starting April 1, 2020. This decision by the GST Council meant that all mobile phones that attracted a 12% GST fee until now found themselves in the higher 18% GST slab.
With April 1, already here, and the government ignoring all pleas by the manufacturers to roll-back the GST hike, several companies are left with no option but to announce a marginal increase in the prices of their smartphones. Among the first companies to have taken the decision to increase the prices of their smartphones include Xiaomi and OPPO.
Xiaomi, India’s largest smartphone brand, released an official statement shared across its social media platforms in which the company explained the circumstances in which they are forced to increase the prices of their handsets marginally. According to the statement, Xiaomi is left with no choice other than hiking the prices of their products with the new GST rates in place effective today. The company also cited the continuous depreciation of the Indian rupee against the US dollar as one of the reasons they have to hike the prices on their products. As of writing this story, the increased prices are not live on the company website.
Mi fans, the GST on mobile phones has increased by 50% from 12% to 18%.
Considering a few other factors and keeping with the #Xiaomi policy of making <5% margin on our hardware products, we will be increasing the prices of our products.
New prices will be effective immediately. pic.twitter.com/S875IOfhT7
— Mi India (@XiaomiIndia) March 31, 2020
Another company that has announced a hike in the prices of their products is OPPO. Unlike Xiaomi, however, the company is yet to make an official announcement. However, the company seems to have already intimated dealers and partners across the country about its plan to increase the prices of some of its handsets. Manish Khatri of Mahesh Telecom, a major smartphone retailer from Mumbai, recently announces the changes in the MOP of some OPPO handsets in a tweet sent out yesterday.
— Manish Khatri (@iManishKhatri) March 31, 2020
As evident from the tweet, the OPPO handsets affected by the price hike include the like of the OPPO Reno3 Pro and the OPPO F15 — both of which were launched just a few weeks ago. Other OPPO handsets that will see prices go up marginally include the OPPO A1k, OPPO A5s, OPPO K1, the OPPO A9, and OPPO Reno2 series.
Following the announcement to increase the GST rate on smartphones, several smartphone brands had appealed to the government to roll back the decision. However, at least for the time being, the Narendra Modi led government appears to be in no mood to relent. We expect more smartphone brands to announce similar price hikes and will update the article with more details as and when we get them.
[Image Via Pixabay]