India cuts taxes on medicines and equipment to treat COVID-19 – Reuters India

India on Saturday cut taxes on medical devices such as oxygen concentrators and drugs utilized to deal with COVID-19 infections, after prevalent criticism over healthcare expenses throughout a terrible second wave of the infection in April and May.The government cut taxes on medical grade oxygen, ventilators, the remdesivir antiviral drug, diagnostic kits, pulse oximeters and hand sanitizers to 5% from 12-18% with immediate effect.The new levies will be in location till the end of September, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, adding it would consist of taxes on electrical heating systems in crematoriums and ambulances.”The rate cut has actually not be done with any expense implication (on federal government financial resources) in mind, it has actually been done so that people get some ease … the choice has actually been taken to provide ultimate ease to patients,” Revenue Secretary Tarun Bajaj informed a news conference.The federal government, nevertheless, would continue to tax vaccines at 5%, he added.The worlds second-most populous nation, where coronavirus cases hit a peak of 400,000 a day in May, reported 84,332 new infections on Saturday, the most affordable in more than two months, data from the health ministry showed.