New Delhi: Rishi Sunak, UK’s first Indian-origin finance minister, who is all set to present his first budget on March 11, is looking to scrap one of the most unpopular taxes, that on women’s sanitary product. If successfully passed, the 5 per cent rate of VAT on sanitary products better known as the “tampon tax” will be abolished from January 2021. Also Read - Boris Johnson Remains in ICU For Third Day, Officials Says His Condition is 'Stable'
Sunak, the 39-year-old finance minister who is also the son-in-law of Infosys co-founder Narayana Murthy, as part of his budget will also commit to new laws designed to ensure that millions of people have access to cash through enough cash points as digital payments catch on. Also Read - Coronavirus: British PM Boris Johnson Taken to Hospital, Will Undergo 'Routine Tests'
In case of the ‘tampon tax’, a European Union (EU) directive that fixed the rate at not below 5 per cent will be considered null after the UK exited the economic bloc’s union. As a result, it is free to change the taxes as an independent member. Also Read - COVID-19: Boris Johnson's Pregnant Fiance Says Had Symptoms For a Week, But is Now on the Mend
The revision will be part of a number of manifesto pledges made by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that his new neighbour at No. 11 Downing Street, Sunak, is likely to include in his budget.
Legislation has already been through Parliament to ensure the change can be made. The UK Treasury department estimates the move will save the average woman nearly GBP 40 over her lifetime, with a cut of 7p on a pack of 20 tampons and 5p on 12 pads.
With PTI inputs