…but some recovery seen during last 15 days, overall mobility also improved
The average E-way bill generation in May dropped to nearly 35 per cent over April and nearly 44 per cent from March.
The GST made E-way bill mandatory for the movement of goods valued over ₹50,000 from one place to another. The E-way bill, which replaces multiple documents, has reduced the transport time with the removal of the check-posts on State borders. It has improved the compliance and collection of tax, says the government .
According to data from GST Network (GSTN), as on May 30, the average daily E-way bill generation dipped to around 12.73 lakh during the month from 19.59 lakh in April and 22.98 lakh in March.
As a silver-lining, the average generation improved a tad in the second fortnight, at a little over 12.15 lakh, suggesting a pick up in goods movement.
“Local lockdowns in many States/UTs including big industrial ones such as Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Delhi, affected business and accordingly E-way bill generation saw a sharp decline,” a senior Finance Ministry official said. However, he expects bills generation to pick up as goods movement resumes with the phased unlock in many States.
A a research report by QuantEco also said there has been some improvement in economic activity during the week ending May 30 that resulted in the agency’s DART index rising by 4.8 per cent. The report stated that mobility, be it in terms of road traffic or rail passenger movement, has improved which brought about positive changes in the index.
Yuvika Singhal of QuantEco said the uptick in DART index is encouraging and points towards economic activity rebounding though it is perhaps a bit early to rejoice as some of the key indicators still remain in red.
“While some States/cities that have successfully bent the Covid curve are commencing to ease curbs, many States have extended lockdowns well into June. Given the magnitude and impact of the second wave, the exit from lockdowns at the State-level can be expected to be guarded and gradual at best,” she said.