Not right time to reinstate GST, says Steven Sim

Deputy Finance Minister II Steven Sim says the government has other avenues to increase the country’s revenue apart from reintroducing the Goods and Services Tax. – The Malaysian Insight file pic, September 18, 2023.

NOW is not the right time to reintroduce the Goods and Services Tax (GST) as the global economy is still slow, Deputy Finance Minister II Steven Sim said.

He said the government needed to look at the GST’s implementation holistically and not only listen to suggestions from certain parties.

“These parties have their reasons for the GST’s reintroduction. For example, traders might say they can claim back (their money) but we need to look at the situation holistically and not just from one or two parties.

“I am not saying whether GST is good or bad but this is not an appropriate time (to implement GST), especially since we are facing a slow global economy and increase in prices of goods,” he said after a dialogue session held in conjunction with the Perak Budget 2024 Roadshow in Ipoh, today.

The media previously quoted Deputy Finance Minister I Ahmad Maslan as saying that several parties favour the GST, including the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers, the Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia, traders and economic analysts.

Ahmad, via a post on his Facebook, said previously, he faced strong opposition over the GST but now, many parties have assisted in explaining the tax.

Sim said the government has other avenues to increase the country’s revenue apart from reimplementing GST.

“So we have other ways (such as) better fiscal management, taxation system and government procurement.

“We have all these methods, including targeted subsidies. So, with all these methods, we can manage our fiscal needs without resorting to GST for now,” he said. – Bernama, September 18, 2023.

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