New Delhi- Goods and Services Tax collections grew 12.4 per cent to a record high of Rs 2.10 lakh crore in April, aided by strong economic momentum and increased domestic transactions and imports, the finance ministry said on Wednesday.

The GST collections have breached the Rs 2 lakh crore mark for the first time in April this year, it said in a statement.

“The Gross Goods and Services Tax (GST) collections hit a record high in April 2024 at Rs 2.10 lakh crore. This represents a significant 12.4 per cent year-on-year growth, driven by a strong increase in domestic transactions (up 13.4 per cent) and imports (up 8.3 per cent),” the ministry said.

The GST revenue, which is basically taxes on goods sold and services rendered, was more than Rs 1.78 lakh crore last month, while it stood at Rs 1.87 lakh crore in April 2023.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in a post on X (formerly Twitter) lauded the efforts of tax officers for achieving the milestone.

“GST collection crosses Rs 2 lakh crore benchmark, thanks to the strong momentum in the economy and efficient tax collections,” she said.

Tax experts said robust GST revenues in April reflect a buoyant economy, self-compliance by businesses, timely audit and scrutiny, besides enforcement measures taken by the department. The increased collections also raise expectations of ushering in the next wave of GST reforms.

In April this year, the mop-up under Central GST (CGST) pool stood at Rs 43,846 crore, while State GST (SGST) collection reached Rs 53,538 crore and Integrated GST (IGST) Rs 99,623 crore, including Rs 37,826 crore collected through levies on imported goods.

The total cess collection was Rs 13,260 crore, including Rs 1,008 crore collected on imported goods.

Out of the IGST collection, Rs 50,307 crore was settled towards CGST and Rs 41,600 crore towards SGST. This translates to a total revenue of Rs 94,153 crore for CGST and Rs 95,138 crore for SGST in April 2024 after regular settlement.

“There are no dues pending on account of IGST settlement to the states,” Sitharaman said in an X post.

After accounting for refunds, the net GST revenue for April 2024 stood at Rs 1.92 lakh crore, a 15.5 per cent growth compared to the same period last year.

Deloitte India Partner Mahesh Jaising said the consistent buoyancy in GST collections has set the stage for pursuing forward-thinking reforms under GST 2.0.

PwC India Partner Pratik Jain said that with the next wave of GST reforms expected after the formation of the new government, the growth (in GST collections) may be further accelerated.

It may also enable the government to make bolder decisions like rate rationalisation or bringing other products, such as ATF and natural gas, under the GST ambit.

According to EY tax Partner Saurabh Agarwal, the GST collection underscores the steadfast resilience of the tax system amid evolving economic landscapes.

“The concerted efforts of the GST officials, including zero tolerance for non-filers, coupled with rigorous measures to combat fake invoicing and the registrations have significantly bolstered GST collections in the states’ coffers,” Agarwal said.

Deloitte India Partner MS Mani said significant GST collection increases have been observed across all major producing and consuming states, indicating that it is widespread and not restricted to a few industrial pockets.

Tax Connect Advisory Services LLP Partner Vivek Jalan said from July 2017, when GST started with an average monthly revenue of around Rs 0.9 lakh crore, to April 2024, when it grossed Rs 2.1 lakh crore, GST revenues have witnessed an approximate growth of 13 per cent per annum on average.

Considering the inflation at 5 per cent and GDP growth of 7 per cent, there has been an average buoyancy of 1 per cent on an average per annum over the last seven years, Jalan said.

Sanjay Chhabria, Senior Director, Indirect Tax at Nexdigm, said the significant rise in domestic transactions can be attributed to consumer spending being focused on beating the summer heat, with purchases like air-conditioners, beverages, as well as increased travel during long vacations from schools and colleges.

“This one-time leap is a new benchmark, which reflects robust economic buoyancy and high consumer spending,” Chhabria said.   (PTI)


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