Govt Might be Asked to Lower GST Collection Target to Realistic Levels for FY20


The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC), the national agency that deals with matters related to levy and collection of goods and services tax (GST) in India, is likely to request the government to lower its GST collection target for 2019-20 in the full year’s budget on 5 July, according to a report.

While presenting the interim budget on 1 February, the Centre had pegged a target of Rs 13.71 lakh crore as GST collection for 2019-20.

“So far, the collection target has been ambitious. We need to set more realistic targets,” a senior finance ministry official was quoted as saying in the report. “We haven’t taken a call yet on what the target should be. But it’s obvious that we can’t set a target we can’t achieve. It’s better to over achieve than under-achieve,” the official added.

CBIC is now likely to put in a formal request to the new finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, for a cut in the GST mop-up target. Formerly known as the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), CBIC reports to the Department of Revenue under the Ministry of Finance. As mentioned earlier, it deals mainly with the matters relating to levy and collection of GST, customs duties and central excise duties.

In the month of May, the Centre and state governments collected a little more than Rs 1 lakh crore in GST receipts, an improvement of 6.7% from the same month a year ago, but lower than the Rs 1.14 lakh crore seen in April.

The government had earlier scaled down the GST collection target for 2018-19 by Rs 1 lakh crore, with revised estimate pegged at Rs 6.44 lakh crore as against the initial budget target of Rs 7.44 lakh crore.

Out of the pegged Rs 6.44 lakh crore GST collections, the Centre was looking to collect central GST (CGST) of Rs 5.04 lakh crore and integrated GST (IGST) of Rs 50,000 crore. Though the government met its revised GST target for 2018-19, the CGST mop-up fell short of the target outlined in the budget, according to the report.

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