The government's collection of Goods and Services Tax (GST) climbed to Rs 95,480 crore in September, in signs of economic revival and return of demand due to lifting of COVID-19-related restrictions. That marked the highest level of GST collection in a month since the beginning of the lockdown to curb the spread of GST. The latest reading was 4 per cent higher compared to the corresponding month last year, and nearly three-times the mop-up in April 2020.
Gross GST revenue collected in September 2020 stood at Rs 95,480 crore, the Finance Ministry in a statement. That included collection of Rs 17,741 crore under Central GST, Rs 23,131 crore under State GST, and Rs 47,484 crore under Integrated GST.
The September tally also included the collection of Rs 22,442 crore on import of goods, and cess of Rs 7,124 crore (including Rs 788 crore collected on import of goods), according to official data.
GST collections were at Rs 86,449 crore in August, Rs 87,422 crore in July, Rs 90,917 crore in June, Rs 62,151 crore in May and Rs 32,172 crore in April.
The government imposed a nationwide lockdown from March 25 to curb the spread of COVID-19 infections, and started easing restrictions in late May.
A modest increase in GST collections (year-on-year) indicates that the economic recovery process is underway, with some key large states also reporting increased collections," said MS Mani, senior director at Deloitte India.
"If the present trends of GST collections continue, we should be hopeful of significant increases in the coming months based on the unlock steps taken in various states and the festival season ahead," he added.
Echoing similar views, EY tax partner Abhishek Jain said the collections have shown decent growth with a significant part of the economy resuming operations and international trade gathering pace. "The increased revenues indicate reinstatement of normalcy in business operations and provides an in general optimistic outlook," he added.