Gross tax on goods and services (GST) revenue was ₹1,33,026 crore in February, up 26% from pre-pandemic levels, the Treasury said.
Collections are 18% higher than February 2021 and mark the fifth time GST revenue has exceeded ₹1.30 lakh crore since its inception in July 2017.
Revenue from imports of goods was 38% higher year-on-year, while revenue from domestic transactions (including import of services) was 12% higher than revenue from these sources in February 2021.
GST Compensation Cess collections exceeded 10,000 crore in a month in February for the first time, which the Treasury said “marks a rebound in certain key sectors, notably auto sales”. Cess collections in February were ₹10,340 crore and included ₹638 crore collected on importing goods.
GST revenue hit a record nearly 1.41 lakh crore in January, compared to February revenue, which reflects transactions completed in January, down 5.65%.
To underscore the importance of these collections, the ministry pointed out that “as a 28-day month, February usually registers lower revenues than January”.
“This high growth in February 2022 should also be seen in the context of partial lockdowns, weekend and night curfews and various restrictions put in place by various states due to the Omicron wave, which peaked around January 20” , it explained in a statement.
That GST revenue surpassed £1.33 billion in January, despite the challenging pandemic situation, suggests revenue is now “on a stable path and exceeding targets for 2021-22,” said MS Mani, Partner at Deloitte India.
However, differences in collection trends across states are a cause for concern. “While overall collections are 18% higher than the same period last year, there is significant variation between states, with increases ranging from 2% to 23% for large states,” he noted.
Among the major developed countries, Maharashtra and Karnataka recorded a 21% increase in GST receipts in February, while the growth rate was far slower at 5% for Tamil Nadu and 8% for Gujarat. Odisha saw 23% growth in GST revenue while Telangana and Andhra Pradesh saw growth of 13% and 19% respectively.
Uttar Pradesh, where general elections are held, saw a 9% increase in revenue while Punjab saw 14% growth. GST receipts in West Bengal and Madhya Pradesh increased just 2%.