Sunday, May 26

‘People-friendly’ SST less problematic compared to GST — Finance Minister


Lim (centre) is accompanied by Chong (third right) and others upon arriving for the SST briefing yesterday. – Bernama photo

KUCHING: The re-introduction and implementation of the Sales and Services Tax (SST) in Malaysia on Sept 1 will not result in as many problems to the people compared to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in 2015.

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the scope of SST is different, simpler and more people-friendly due to its larger number of exemptions on gazatted products and services.

In a press conference prior to attending an SST briefing with more than 1,000 industry players here yesterday, he said the gazetting of a product or service for exemption is an ongoing process which is expected to be completed by year end.

“The (finance) ministry and the Royal Malaysian Customs Department have to study on how to reduce or provide tax exemptions (on products and services) as we have to study its chain of effects,” said Lim.

On a related matter, he said the ministry has already instructed telecommunication companies in the country not to charge SST on their prepaid services to customers.

“So now, if someone makes a top-up of RM10, that would the value that they will be getting,” he added.

He also disclosed that motorcycles under 250cc are exempt from SST, while the tax on its accessories has also been reduced from 10 per cent to five per cent.

Touching on the briefing organised by the Customs Department in each state, Lim said he will be heading to
Kedah and Penang in the coming days.

Such programmes are vital for the ministry to gain input and feedback on the implementation of SST among those in the business industry, he pointed out.

Lim also said the Customs Department in each state will select one state officer to deal with any enquiries on SST to avoid any inconsistency in giving answers.

The selection of the state officer, he added, will be recommended by each Customs state director.

Among those present at the briefing yesterday were Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Chong Chieng Jen, State Secretary Tan Sri Datuk Amar Mohamad Morshidi Abdul Ghani, Customs deputy director-general Datuk Paddy Abdul Halim, Customs Sarawak director Dato Sharifah Halimah Taha, and Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Sarawak director Dato Stanley Tan.