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City awash with pre-GST discount offersA shopper outside an apparel store in Bathinda on Monday. Tribune photo: Pawan sharma

City awash with pre-GST discount offers

Most retail outlets, following in footsteps of e-retail sites, have started offering huge discounts27 Jun 2017 | 12:50 AM

BATHINDA: As the date of implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) comes closer, discount sales on goods such as electronic appliances, apparels, mobile accessories and footwear have flooded the online portals and retail stores.

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Nikhila Pant Dhawan

Tribune News Service

Bathinda, June 26

As the date of implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) comes closer, discount sales on goods such as electronic appliances, apparels, mobile accessories and footwear have flooded the online portals and retail stores.

Staring at low profit margins on stocks of certain products on which the net tax is expected to be higher, the retailers are trying to clear the stock.

While white goods such as air-conditioners are being offered at discounts ranging from 10-40 per cent, some apparel companies are offering discounts as high as 50 per cent on their products.

In addition to discounts, there are time-bound offers at more cheap rates to give the retailers a chance to clear even the less-in-demand stock.

Notably, the white goods such as air-conditioners, washing machines and refrigerators are scheduled to fall under the 28 per cent GST bracket, against the current bracket of 21-23 per cent, inclusive of VAT and excise duty.

A salesperson at a Bathinda-based electronics appliances store shared that the store was offering unprecedented discount on air-conditioners.

“We are offering anywhere between 10-40 per cent discount on air-conditioners depending of the brand. These are the months when the sale of air-conditioners and refrigerators jump. If other stores are offering discounts, we also have to do the same otherwise we may lose our customer base,” the manager said.

Also tackling the problem of the companies refusing to take the existing stock back and rather asking the retailers to finish the stock at their end, the apparel stores are also offering major discounts.

“Earlier, June was considered to be the leanest season as shoppers wouldn’t step out due to excessive heat and also because they would wait for the monsoon season. But this time around, with the GST implementation just days away, apparel stores have announced huge discounts. While the sellers want to clear stock, it is a win-win situation for the shoppers,” said Shaleen Gupta, assistant manager at a multi-brand apparel store in the city.

While store owners are lightening their stock burden, the shoppers don’t mind making their pockets lighter and are going all out to enjoy the unexpected windfall of discounts.

“The sale season has begun earlier, thanks to the implementation of GST. Apart from the shops in the local markets, the online portals are offering best possible discounts. This is the time every shopper dreams of,” said Ekta Setia, a city resident.

The rate of discount being offered by online portals is also making shop owners in the local markets to offer similar discounts to attract customers.

The manager of an Indian ethnic wear brand store on Mall Road said, “Some customers came to us and showed us the discount that e-commerce portals were offering on the same items. We are left with no option but to offer similar discounts.”

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