Collection of GST was just over Rs 18,000 crore through integrated GST (IGST) on imports in March, the lowest since the new tax regime kicked in 30 months ago, indicating diminishing collection in future, putting additional pressure on the government that is facing demands for fiscal stimulus in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Collections in March are related to sales or import consignments in February and the numbers are lower than the previous low of Rs 19,603 crore raised in February 2018. Low collections from imports point to not only a significant decline in the value shipments into the country but also a further moderation in economic activity. The numbers on the cess on imported luxury and sin goods, however, were not the lowest ever, although collections under this head, estimated at Rs 841 crore, declined 20% compared to the previous month and 5.6% compared to a year ago. The GST revenues during the month of March 2020 from domestic transactions have shown a negative growth of 4% over the revenue during the month of March 2019. Taking into account the GST collected from the import of goods, the total revenue during March, 2020has also decreased by 8% in comparison to the revenue during March 2019. During this month, the GST on import of goods has shown a negative growth of (-) 23% as compared to March 2019. The latest IGST numbers for March were probably on account of factory shutdowns in China due to coronavirus, which resulted in lower shipments of basic drugs, plastics and even electronic components that are used for manufacturing mobile phones and other devices. The global economic shutdown has raised concerns in the finance ministry over the amount that the Centre can hope to raise through taxes — both direct and indirect. While there has been a deferment in GST payments for small businesses for three months, with no interest or penalty to be charged, larger businesses will need to pay interest on delayed payments. But with business confined to essential goods and services, the amount of taxes coming during the first quarter is bound to be low, officials conceded. And, lower tax revenue is going to impact the spending of not just the Centre but even states since they have an over 40% share, which will force them to increase borrowings to sustain their spending.