Good news for bike lovers! Harley Davidson, Triumph to get cheaper; here’s why

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Niharika Mishra

Good news for bike lovers! Imported motorcycles from high-end brands such as Harley Davidson and Triumph set to get cheaper as the government slashed customs duty to 50 percent.

Earlier, import of motorcycles with engine capacity of 800cc or less used to attract 60 percent duty, while those with capacity of 800cc or more attracted 75 percent.

According to the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) notification on February 12, import duty on engine, gearbox, or transmission mechanism as a completely knocked down (CKD) kit in pre-assembled form of motorcycles, not mounted on body assembly, has been reduced to 25 percent.

The CBEC has slashed the duty on both these variants of motorcycles imported as completely build units (CBU) to 50 per cent.

Meanwhile, the CBEC has hiked customs duty to 15 percent from 10 percent earlier on import of engine, gearbox and transmission mechanism which are not pre-assembled. This was done to promote government’s ambitious ‘Make in India’ initiative.

Howeverr, Indian experts believe the import duty rates have been rationalised for these motorcycles as it has been an industry demand for long and such high-end bikes are not manufactured in India at present.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump on February 14 criticised India for imposing high import duty on the iconic Harley-Davidson motorcycles and threatened to increase the import tariff on “thousands and thousands” of Indian motorcycles to the US.

During a discussion with members of the Congress on the steel industry, Trump said the recent decision of the Indian government to reduce the tariff from 75 per cent to 50 per cent was not enough and asked that it should be reciprocal, as the US imposes “zero tax” on the import of motorcycles.

Trump also indirectly referred to the recent conversation he had with Prime Minister Narendra Modi in this regard.

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