Finance Minister: Inappropriate To Introduce New Taxes Now, Including GST
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Finance Minister, Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz has said that the government will not introduce new taxes for now, including the Goods and Services Tax (GST). Instead, it will focus on revitalising the economy and assisting the public following the challenges triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The government will study all types of taxes in order to fill the country’s coffers. But the timing in doing so is also important. We believe that our economy is just into its recovery. It is not the right time to introduce any new tax or any change in taxes. The focus should be on revitalising the economy,” said Tengku Zafrul, adding that the PEMERKASA stimulus package is one of the initiatives that will aid the nation’s economy in its recovery.

(Image: The Edge Markets)

For context, Malaysia saw a contraction of 5.6% in its gross domestic product (GDP) last year – recorded as the worst fall since the Asian Financial Crisis in 1998. The economy shrank by a higher 3.4% in the fourth quarter of 2020 with the Covid-19 resurgence, compared to the contraction of 2.7% in Q3, which contributed to the dip in GDP. Meanwhile, the growth forecast for 2021 is set at 6.5% to 7.5%, with the fiscal deficit target at 5.8%.

“So, we can see our revenue will increase slightly (this year) compared to last year,” commented Tengku Zafrul. He also said that the government will look for efficient ways to have taxes help lift the government’s revenue after the economy has recovered.

(Source: The Star, The Sun Daily)

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