Collections from the levy of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) stood at a provisional ₹7.41-lakh crore for the year ended March 31.
The GST regime was rolled out on July 1, 2017, and therefore the total tax mop-up pertains to the nine-month period from July 2017 to March 2018.
A statement from the Finance Ministry said the total GST revenue collected between August 2017 and March 2018 was ₹7.19-lakh crore. “For (these) eight months, the average monthly collection has been ₹89,885 crore,” the statement said.
Thise collection includes ₹1.19-lakh crore of Central GST, ₹1.72-lakh crore of State GST and ₹3.66-lakh crore of Integrated GST.
The Integrated GST collections include the ₹1.73-lakh crore tax on imports and ₹62,021 crore of cess.
Commenting on the collections, Abhishek A Rastogi, Partner, Khaitan & Co, said, “The collection is below target as rate cuts were announced in the recent past and various refunds in the case of export and other cases have also been cleared. It is hoped that the compliance level will improve further and all the assessees registered will start paying taxes, thereby leading to improved GST collections in the new financial year.”
The SGST collection during the year, including the settlement of IGST, has been ₹2.91-lakh crore and the total compensation released to the States ₹41,147 crore.
The compensation is to ensure that the revenue of the States is protected at the level of 14 per cent over the base-year tax collection in 2015-2016. “The revenue gap of each State is coming down over (the) last eight months. The average revenue gap of all States for last year is around 17 per cent,” the statement added.
The Finance Ministry also noted that there has been “a progressive improvement” in the compliance level observed during the course of the year.
In July 2017, the portion of GST returns filed on time stood at 57.69 per cent. This improved to 66.81 per cent by December 2017 but dipped to 62.63 per cent in March 2018.
The cumulative compliance levels (percentage of returns filed till date) for initial months has crossed 90 per cent and for July 2018, has reached 96 per cent.
“There are State-wise variations in the compliance level observed till due date. However, including delayed filings, the State-wise compliance levels converge over a period of time,” the Finance Ministry statement added.
Parag Mehta, Partner at NA Shah Associates LLP, said, “Currently, there is stability in law for the past three months and the compliance level has also increased.”
With the GSTN system working smoothly and no hindrances for generating e-way bills, the compliance level should increase further, he added. “With many States also introducing the intra-State generation of e-way bills for movement of goods, evasion is bound to reduce and increase the revenue.”
Source: The Hindu business line