KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 22 – Iris Corp Bhd said its RM155 million Goods and Services Tax’s (GST) tax refund software for tourists will be operational on GST’s implementation on Apr 1, 2015. Group managing director, Datuk Tan Say Jim, said Iris has received the approval from the Royal Malaysian Customs Department and would start developing the software — Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS). “It is not a contract where the government gives us a certain amount of money. We were given a ‘three-plus-two-year’ concession by the government. It is up to us to invest in the infrastructure,” he told reporters after the company’s annual general meeting here today.
He said for the six per cent of the GST refund made by the tourist, Iris would get 15 per cent of the refund value. “Right now, we are negotiating with the Customs Department on which areas that are suitable to put up the counters. We are identifying certain places like the KLIA and klia2, for sure,” he said. Pursuant to the tender requirements, Iris has also established a joint venture (JV) company with Global Blue, the Swiss-based expert in international shopping and spending. The JV would provide a world-class TRS system in Malaysia by combining Iris’ proven expertise in global IT solutions with Global Blue’s experience in operating TRS in 37 countries worldwide.
Global Blue chief executive officer, David Baxby, said offering GST refunds would make Malaysian retailers even more attractive to global shoppers, the world’s most valuable customers. “Travelling within Asia is forecast to continue to grow significantly in the coming years, and the introduction of a TRS will establish Malaysia as a shopping paradise for international travelers,” he said. Tourism Malaysia has reportedly set a target of 28 million tourists for Visit Malaysia 2014, who are expected to spend a total of RM76 billion, from 25.7 million tourists registered last year, with receipts of RM65.44 billion.