Buy one and get one, free samples and additional quantities for the same price — the main stay of marketing for FMCG, pharmaceutical and textile companies and food and retail chains — may no longer be taxed. Tax authorities had sent notices to companies in these sectors that had offered such freebies, which had become taxable after the goods and services tax was rolled out last year.
A panel of officials under the GST Council, the decision-making body of the tax, has favoured doing away with GST on freebies. The final call on the issue will be taken by the Council, a government official told ET. The Law Review Committee said in a report submitted to the Council that the total consideration paid for such goods should be chargeable to GST and input tax credit should not be denied in such cases. Essentially, the price paid by the consumer for the goods would be considered for the levy of GST, even though one item may have come free with another. By that logic, the input taxes on both items would be available to be set off against the final tax. The committee said gifts and samples should not be denied input tax credit.