Uttar Pradesh registers highest post-GST revenue growth in country
Uttar Pradesh has bucked the trend amid gloomy reports about most of the states having suffered a severe revenue setback in the first month of the GST launch on July 1.
Contrary to apprehensions by authorities, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) appears to have opened to a grand start in UP as far as the impact of the new tax regime on the state exchequer is concerned. The state has registered the highest revenue rise in the country in August (the July tax paid in August) over the corresponding month of 2016.
Against the Rs 3810.08 crore commercial tax revenue earned in August last year, the state got Rs 4755.86 crore tax during the same month of this year registering a growth of 24.82%. In a recent note to the government on ‘GST’s impact on the revenue’, commercial tax commissioner Mukesh Meshram termed the increase as the highest in the country.
“Despite all the odds, the department has earned 24.82% more revenue in August this year vis-à-vis the corresponding month of the previous year and the revenue collection is 98.37% of the target,” he says in the note claiming, “The post-GST revenue rise in UP is the highest in the country.”
The revenue rise in respect of GST goods, in fact, is even higher in the state. If the non-GST goods, that is, petrol, diesel, crude oil, natural gas, air turbine fuel (ATF) and liquor used for human consumption are not taken into account, the tax increase from the GST goods has been calculated to be 33.67% which is 110.62% of the target. The revenue growth with respect to the goods that are outside the GST regime has been found to be low at 13% only.
UP’s GST growth becomes even more special since almost all other states in the country as Meshram specifically mentions in the note, have registered a negative revenue growth as a result of the GST rollout from July 1.
Uttar Pradesh was also anticipating a significant revenue dip in the first month of the GST though it was sure of being better off in the long run by virtue of its being a big consumer state with the GST being a destination/consumption based tax.
“We were expecting 20%-25% fall in revenue in August this year compared to the same period the previous year,” Meshram says.
Giving more reasons for the apprehensions, he says in the note, “First, the sale-purchase was expected to be low in July since most of the dealers resorted to pre-GST sale offers to empty their existing stocks, second, the tax rates on most of the goods had been lowered in GST regime and third the department had suspended the enforcement with regard to tax evasion till the next orders.”
The significant post-GST revenue rise in UP is being attributed to the commercial tax department’s various initiatives, including bringing new dealers under the tax net and making the existing ones file their tax returns on the goods brought from other states and sold in UP, as per the GST provisions.
“Not only 80.59% of the VAT dealers were made to migrate to the GST but 2,78,840 new traders have also been registered so far which is the highest in the country, Gujarat coming second,” Meshram’s note says
Additional chief secretary (commercial tax) RK Tiwari says the initial post-GST revenue rise is very encouraging and contrary to the estimates.
“Now, we can expect to do even better in future by putting an effective check on tax evasion,” he says.