New Delhi [India], April 2 (ANI): The all-time high record collection of Goods and Service Tax (GST) is due to economic recovery and increased compliance with the use of technology, said Tarun Bajaj, Secretary, Revenue and Department of Economic Affairs. GST collection in March this year stood at a record high of Rs 1,23,902 crore.
In an exclusive interview with ANI, Bajaj pointed out the reason behind the record GST collection in March. Bajaj said that there are mainly two reasons behind the record GST collection: the economy has started moving upward and we had used technology for better compliance. For the last six months, we are continuously getting GST collection above Rs. 1 lakh crore. This systemic change has set up ease of compliance and also the pace of economic recovery. “We are hopeful that this trend will continue further,” he added.
He said that economy is recovering better than our anticipation. This is because of the steps taken by the finance ministry. “We believe that in the current financial year 2021- 22, we will see good growth,” he added.
Replying to a query about the probable impact of the recent rise in Covid-19 cases, Bajaj said, “Last year in March when we witnessed Covid -19 for the first time, we handled it with lockdown and other measures but now we have upgraded health infrastructure and vaccines. We are concerned about the recent rise in Covid cases but not worried. We are now far better equipped with vaccines and better health infrastructure to address the challenge. So this time our strategy to handle Covid-19 is totally different from earlier. The recent corona wave will not impact our economy as it impacted earlier,” he said.
Bajaj said that bringing petroleum products under GST may take a little time as it needs wider discussions in GST Council. It is a complex matter that involves the interests of the States and the Centre and hence needs to be discussed in detail. It may take some time. He expressed hope that when the economy and revenue collections will show growth, this issue will also be resolved.
On the question of whether the prices of petrol and diesel would come down if these products are brought under GST, he said that it will depend under which rate category these would be placed or whether a new rate category would be created. As of today, it would not be feasible to comment on it, he said. (ANI)