Report On SST Implementation Method To Be Ready In Two Weeks, Says Daim

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 31 – The report on the Sales and Services Tax (SST) implementation method will be submitted to the government within two weeks, said Chairman of the Council of Eminent Persons Tun Daim Zainuddin. The SST system to be introduced will “somewhat be an updated version” with the ultimate goal of lowering the price of goods and services for the people.

“There will be no immediate need to introduce any new taxes, nor increase the personal income tax or corporate tax rates at this juncture,” said Daim, adding that economics was a very complex subject and could not be looked at from a single perspective.

Giving an overview of the “would be” upgraded SST system over TV3’s Buletin Utama aired last night, the former finance minister said the tax would be capable of raking in sufficient revenue to make up for the loss of proceeds from the abolition of the Goods and Services Tax.

“The Royal Malaysian Customs Department has already given me a preliminary report. Revenue may be less than RM5.0 billion but oil prices are increasing steadily. The (2018) Budget was worked out on the premise that oil prices would hover around US$52 (RM207) per barrel but now it is fetching about US$70 (RM279) per barrel.

“Last week, it was US$80 (RM319) per barrel. For every US$1 (RM3.99) movement, we will earn RM300 million to cover our shortfall,” explained the 80-year-old who was once the economic advisor to the government in the 1990s.

Commenting on doubts raised as to whether goods and services would be cheaper after the re-introduction of the SST, the diminutive tycoon said the value of the ringgit would impact the price of goods, the bulk of which are imported. This situation can be overcome with the people placing more trust in the government, he added. — Bernama

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