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STATE OF ECONOMY AND GST COLLECTION

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STATE OF ECONOMY AND GST COLLECTION
By: Dr. Sanjiv Agarwal
August 4, 2021
All Articles by: Dr. Sanjiv Agarwal       View Profile
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Post Covid-19 second wave, it has become imperative to reassess growth estimates for the current fiscal. Second wave was less destructive as production and logistics faced less destruction. This was supplemented by enhanced vaccination efforts leading to increase in pace of economic activities. Besides, various initiatives such as privatization of enterprises, asset monetization, production linked incentives, new labour code etc many spur growth in medium to long term. However, long term economic prospects of India look to be positive and robust. Indian economy is expected to be on recovery path soon.

In view of the recent second wave of Covid, in March- May, 2021, IMF has cut India’s economic growth forecast for the FY 2022 to 9.5% from earlier 12.5%. However, it raises GDP projection for FY 2023 to 8.5%. It has opined that high vaccination rate will be the key to economic recovery. IMF’s growth projection for China and US in 2020 are 5.7% and 4.9% respectively, whereas the World growth projection is @ 4.90%. Now revised projections for India’s growth in 2022 by various agencies is – IMF(9.5%), World bank (83%), OECD (9.9%) and ADB (10.0%).

Increased tax collection in Q1 of current fiscal indicates that economy is on the path of recovery. Net indirect tax collection (GST and non-GST) is₹ 3.11 lakh crore. Net direct tax collection is over ₹ 2.46 lakh crore. The increased tax collection (direct & indirect) as reported in the first quarter of the current financial year as compared to the same period previous financial year shows that the economy is on the recovery path. Higher Tax collection would enable Government in increasing public expenditure, which would have a positive impact on GDP.

Tax buoyancy in India in Q1 of current fiscal has contained fiscal deficit to 8 years low, i.e. @ 18.2% of Budget Estimates against 83.2% in same period last year. This is mainly due to tax revenues, non-tax revenue and non-debt capital receipts, alongwith contraction in revenue expenditure.

There is a economic cost of Covid-19. Our economy has been pushed back. Urban un-employment rate had gone up from 8.9% in April 2019 to 20.09% in June, 2020. Labour segment faced a squeeze in jobs, wages, savings etc. According to Periodic Labour Force Report, 2020 (June quarter) released recently, the pandemic has pushed people from more productive Urban economy to a less productive rural sector. Restoring economy as well as jobs ought to be topmost priority now.

According to Chief Economic Advisor, GST rates rationalization may happen and is on the Government’s agenda. Three rate structure is important but at the same time, there is a need to fix issues in inverted duty structure.

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has clarified that issuance of summons, search, enquiry or investigations, and even consequential arrest, as prescribed under GST law, will not be affected by the Supreme Court’s recent order on limitation dated 27.04.2021. Actions such as scrutiny of returns, issuance of summons, search, enquiry or investigations and even consequential arrest in accordance with GST law would not be covered by the apex court ruling. Also, issuance of show-cause notice, granting time for replies and passing orders will not be covered.

CBIC has issued new notification Nos. 29, 30 & 31, all dated 30th July, 2021 notifying effective date of 01.08.2021 for section 110 and 111 of Finance Act, 2021. Other amendments include requirement of furnishing annual return in Form GSTR 9, 9A and 9B, exemption to taxpayers from filing annual return, change in Form GSTR 9C  making it self-certifiable by taxable person and exemption from filing annual return for FY 2020-2021.

GSTN data indicates that e-way bill generation in July, 2021 may exceed 5 crore. It already touched 4.96 crore as on 25th July, 2021. This also hints that July GST collection may be better than the previous month which will be reflected in August payments. GST collections are expected to bounce back to one lakh crore plus figure.

The gross GST revenue collected in the month of July 2021 is ₹ 1,16,393 crore of which CGST is ₹ 22,197 crore, SGST is ₹ 28,541 crore, IGST is ₹ 57,864 crore (including ₹ 27,900 crore collected on import of goods) and Cess is ₹ 7,790 crore (including ₹ 815 crore collected on import of goods). The revenues for the month of July 2021 are 33% higher than the GST revenues in the same month last year. During the month, revenues from import of goods was 36% higher and the revenues from domestic transaction (including import of services) are 32% higher than the revenues from these sources during the same month last year. GST collection, after posting above Rs. one lakh crore mark for eight months in a row, dropped below Rs. one lakh crore in June 2021 as the collections during the month of June 2021 predominantly related to the month of May 2021 and during May 2021, most of the States/UTs were under either complete or partial lock down due to COVID. With the easing out of COVID restrictions, GST collection for July2021 has again crossed₹ 1 lakh crore, which clearly indicates that the economy is recovering at a fast pace. The YoY growth in GST collection in July, 2021 is positive in all states barring two states. The highest growth is seen in Arunachal Pradesh, Haryana, Manipur, Jharkhand, Ladakh, J & K etc.

 

By: Dr. Sanjiv Agarwal - August 4, 2021

 

 

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