Thursday, October 22

After Petronas settles Sarawak’s SST, Shafie says Sabah’s tax must be paid too


Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal. 

PUTATAN (Sept 18): Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said today he will ensure that Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) pays the state sales tax (SST) if the Warisan-led government is returned to power in the coming polls.

The state government will take action against the national oil corporation if it fails to pay up, said the caretaker chief minister when asked to comment on Sarawak collecting RM2.965 billion in SST from Petronas yesterday.

Speaking to reporters after a meet-the-people session at Dewan Sri Putatan here today, Shafie said Petronas must give the same treatment to Sabah and Sarawak.

“Definitely because if Sarawak state government can be paid, we should also be paid equally,” Shafie said.

“What has been embedded in the rights of Sarawak, is also embedded in the rights of Sabah. After all the oil doesn’t come from any other place, it comes from Sabah anyway. So, the same treatment should be given to both states as well.”

Shafie had announced in April this year that, with immediate effect, Sabah was imposing a five per cent SST on all petroleum products.

He also said that he had informed all the oil companies, including Petronas, and they agreed with the implementation of the tax.

The tax is implemented under Section 10(1) of the State Sales Tax Enactment 1988, which requires petroleum companies to obtain a licence for the sale of petroleum products.

Yesterday, Abang Johari received the full settlement from Petronas and its subsidiaries for SST owed for 2019.

The payment came after a legal tussle over the state’s right to impose the SST under Sarawak’s Sales Tax Ordinance 1998 in January last year.

The Kuching High Court ruled on March 13 that Sabah and Sarawak had the right under the Federal Constitution to impose SST on petroleum products.

Petronas had initially filed an appeal in court but the state and the oil corporation reached an agreement in May this year and both sides dropped their legal suits against each other.