The collection in November 2020 is 1.4 % higher than in November 2019 when the GST mop-up was ₹1,03,491 crore
Gross revenues from the Goods and Services Tax (GST) crossed the ₹1 lakh crore mark for the second month in a row, with ₹1,04,963 crore collected in November 2020. This was 1.4% higher than a year ago but a tad lower than October’s collections.
The pick-up in GST revenues over the last two months could reduce the shortfall in GST compensation dues to States, but economists urged caution till December to assess if the economy is truly out of the woods after the festive demand factor has played out.
Also read | Indian economy contracts by 7.5% in Q2
Cumulatively, the GST revenues from the first eight months of 2020-21 add up to ₹6,64,709 crore, reflecting a 17.4% dip from the ₹8,05,164 crore collected in the same period of 2019-20.
“In line with the recent trend of recovery, the revenues for November 2020 are 1.4% higher than the GST revenues in the same month last year. During the month, revenues from imports was 4.9% higher and revenues from domestic transaction (including import of services) are 0.5% higher than the revenues from these sources during the same month last year,” the Finance Ministry said in a statement.
November’s GST collections, boosted by festive spending, were just ₹192 crore lower than October, which had recorded the highest revenue from indirect taxes since February 2020. GST revenues had collapsed to just ₹32,172 crore in April this year as economic activity was crippled following the national lockdown.
“The average pace of growth in GST collections in October-November 2020 stood at a moderately healthy 6%. The trends regarding the sustainability of demand will be clearer in the data on the GST collections for December 2020, which will be for the transactions that took place in the month of November 2020,” said Aditi Nayar, principal economist at ICRA Ltd.
Among the major States, Andhra Pradesh (12%), Gujarat and Jharkhand (11%), followed by Tamil Nadu (10%), were the only ones to record double-digit growth in November’s GST revenues compared to a year ago.
Abhishek Jain, tax partner at EY termed the second straight month of ₹1 lakh crore-plus GST collections encouraging and said this should help in containing the shortfall of GST collections caused due to the pandemic.
In November, ₹8,242 crore was collected in the form of cess, which is used to compensate States for implementing the GST. This was higher than the ₹8,011 crore collected as cess in October.
Ms. Nayar termed the mild month-on-month dip in the GST collections in November 2020 as discouraging, but said the festival calendar had an impact.
“In our view, the sharp moderation in growth in the generation of GST e-way bills in November 2020 relative to the previous month, signals the impact of the change in working days related to the shift in the festive calendar,” she said.