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The Rs 20,000-crore plywood, plyboard, medium density fibreboard and particle-board industry is hopeful of reduction in Goods and Services Tax (GST) rate to 18 per cent from the current 28 per cent in the forthcoming council meeting. "The plywood, MDF and particle board industry is very hopeful that GST rate will be brought down to at least 18 per cent which is very high at 28 per cent," Federation of Indian Plywood and Panel Industry president Sajjan Bhajanka said. "Several ministers with whom our members have interacted had assured to look into their plight and we hope in the forthcoming GST council meeting on September 9 at Hyderabad, a decision in this regard is expected," he said. Laminates which is supposed to be a premium product in the plywood industry, attracts 18 per cent GST. There has been strong opposition to the announcement and resentment among the playwood industry players in north India, which accounts for at least 50 per cent of the industry. North India Plywood Manufacturers Association members said most of the small players would have to close down with such high taxation burden. Besides, the 28 per cent taxation on plyboard is also hurting the festive mood in Bengal where the same has impacted in Durga idol pandal making due to sharp rise in price. Plyboard is one of the major input materials in pandal and other decorations.