GST Rate for Stationary Products Pen, Paper, Pencil and HSN Code of Stationery Items

Home » Blogs » GST Rate for Stationary Products Pen, Paper, Pencil and HSN Code of Stationery Items

Table of Contents

 At the 47th GST Council meeting, changes were made to the GST rates for stationery items, which include products like pencil sharpeners, paper knives, and printing, writing, or drawing ink. These rates were increased from 12% to 18% to address the issue of an inverted tax structure. Additionally, certain exemptions were introduced, effective from July 18, 2022. Furthermore, there was a subsequent rate cut for pencil sharpeners at the 49th GST Council meeting. Below, we provide an overview of the current GST structure for stationery items. 

Classification of Stationery Products under GST

Stationery products used for writing, drawing, or other office-related purposes are categorised into different GST rate slabs based on their nature and usage. The GST regime classifies stationery items into various categories, each subject to a distinct GST rate.

  • Everyday stationery essentials, including pens, pencils, erasers, sharpeners, rulers, and staplers, are categorised under the 18% GST slab. These items are considered fundamental office supplies and find extensive use among businesses and individuals.
  • Specialised stationery products like calculators, scientific instruments, and drafting tables may fall under the 12% or 18% GST slab, depending on their specific nature and intended usage.

GST Rate for Pen

Most stationery products, including pens, fall under Chapter 96 of the HSN (Harmonized System of Nomenclature) code system. The only exception to this rule is slate pencils, chalk, and slates, which do not incur any GST.

12% GST Rate for Select Stationery Products and Pens

  • Pens: This category includes all types of cells except Fountain and stylograph pens.
  • Pencils, Crayons, Pastels: Various tools used for drawing, colouring, and writing, such as pencils, crayons, pastels, drawing charcoals, and writing or drawing chalks, fall under this category.
  • Tailors’ Chalk: Tailors’ chalk, a tool primarily used in the fashion and textile industry, is also subject to 12% GST.

Stationery Products and Pens Taxed at 18% under GST

  • Brushes: This category includes brushes, whether used as standalone tools or as parts of machines, appliances, or vehicles. Also included are mops, prepared knots and tufts for broom or brush making, paint pads, rollers,  hand-operated mechanical floor sweepers that are not motorised, feather dusters, and squeegees (excluding roller squeegees).
  • Hand Sieves and Hand Riddles: These are tools used for sifting or separating materials by hand.
  • Writing and Drawing Boards: Boards with a surface for writing or drawing, whether framed or unframed.
  • Typewriter Ribbons and Ink-pads: Typewriter or similar ribbons that are inked or otherwise prepared for making impressions, whether on spools or cartridges. Ink-pads, whether inked or not, with or without boxes, also fall under this category.
  • Supports and Stands: This includes monopods, bipods, tripods, and similar articles supporting various devices or equipment.

GST on Metallic Stationery Products
captainbiz gst on metallic stationery products

A select group of stationery items and pens are subject to a 28% GST rate under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) system. Interestingly, these products are not classified under Chapter 96, which typically covers stationery. Instead, they fall under Chapter 83, categorised as miscellaneous articles made of base metal.

  • Office and Desk Equipment: Items like card-index cabinets, paper trays, paper rests, pen trays, office stamp stands, filing cabinets, and other similar office or desk equipment, are all made from base metal. This category does not encompass office furniture.
  • Office Articles: Fittings for loose-leaf binders or files, letter clips, letter corners, paper clips, indexing tags, and other office articles, all constructed from base metal. This category includes staples in strips used for various purposes, such as in offices, upholstery, or packaging, and made from base metal.
  • Plates, Numbers, and Letters: Products like signplates, nameplates, and address plates, along with similar plates, numbers, letters, and symbols, all crafted from base metal.

GST Rates for Paper-Based Stationery Products

Paper and paperboard and articles made from paper pulp, paper, or paperboard fall under HSN Code Chapter 48. Various paper-based stationery products are categorised under this chapter, each subject to specific GST rates. The GST rates for paper-based stationery products are as follows:

Paper-Based Stationery Products Taxed at 12% GST

  • Uncoated paper and paperboard, uncoated kraft paper, greaseproof paper, glassine paper, composite paper, etc.
  • Aseptic packaging paper
  • Boxes, pouches, wallets, and writing compendiums made of paper or paperboard, containing various paper stationery items, including writing blocks
  • Cartons, boxes, and cases made of corrugated paper or paperboard
  • Exercise books, graph books, and laboratory notebooks.

Paper-Based Stationery Products Taxed at 18% GST

  • Copying or transferring papers, which includes paper that is coated or impregnated for duplicator stencils or offset plates, whether printed or unprinted, available in rolls or sheets. self-copy paper, carbon paper.
  • Plain postcards, envelopes, letter cards, and correspondence cards made of paper or paperboard, except for boxes, pouches, wallets, and writing compendiums containing an assortment of paper stationery, including writing blocks.
  • Account books, notebooks, order books, receipt books, letter pads, memorandum pads, diaries, registers, and similar articles blotting pads; folders; file covers; exercise books; binders (loose-leaf or other);  manifold business forms; interleaved carbon sets; and other stationery articles made of paper or paperboard. This category also includes book covers made of paper or paperboard, including albums for samples or collections.
  • Printed or non-printed paper or paperboard labels of every kind.

Claiming Input Tax Credit (ITC) on Stationery Items in GST

Input tax credit (ITC) can be availed for stationery items under the GST framework as long as these items are intended to promote business activities. Furthermore, these goods and services should not fall under the negative list of supplies. It’s essential to allocate the overall cost of stationery items at the corporate or office level proportionately to all divisions.

Take control of your business today! Streamline operations, boost efficiency, and maximise profits with Captainbiz.

Start your Free trial for 14 days without any credit.


The taxation of stationery products under GST is a comprehensive system with varying tax rates based on the nature and type of stationery items. Understanding these rates and classifications is essential for businesses to ensure accurate tax compliance. Input Tax Credit (ITC) can be claimed on stationery items if used for business purposes and not on the negative list. Proper allocation of expenses is necessary for businesses to make the most of their ITC claims. Staying well-informed about GST regulations related to stationery products is vital for businesses to manage their finances effectively and adhere to tax requirements in a constantly evolving tax landscape.

Also Read: New GST Rates 2023 – List Of Latest Goods And Service Tax Rates Slabs

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

  • What is the GST rate for a notebook?

Notebooks are subject to a 12% GST rate.

  • What is the GST rate for a pencil?

Pencils are also taxed at a 12% GST rate. It’s important to note that slate pencils are exempt from GST.

author avatar
Moulik Jain
I am a seasoned marketer specializing in Tax, Finance, and MSMEs. I bring a wealth of hands-on experience to demystify complex subjects, providing insightful guidance for entrepreneurs and finance enthusiasts alike.

Leave a Reply