“Conduct studies to understand reliability, efficiency of tax systems,” govt told

AN MCA leader has expressed disappointment that the government’s implementation of taxes did not take into account the wellbeing of the people.

MCA Public Policy and People’s Livelihood Research Advisory Committee chairperson Dr Monna Ong Siew Siew said the government should take action to study the most effective implementation of taxes in order to maximise national revenue and revive the economy.

“Economic experts and Barisan Nasional leaders including MCA have urged for the reintroduction of a more efficient Goods and Services Tax (GST) but this demand has not been given attention,” she said in a statement on Thursday (Jan 4).

“The increase in the prices of goods due to excessive taxation is being felt by the people. They believe that the government is not serious in improving its administrative efficiency and does not openly accept criticism and feedback.”

Citing the 10% Low Value Goods Tax (LVG) on imported products tagged below RM500 sold through e-commerce platforms as an example, Ong said the implementation of the tax has had an impact on the economy of the people.

She also cited an article on The Star, noting that traders had to make price adjustments to ensure that they can maintain their profits following the implementation of the LVG tax.

Meanwhile, Ong noted that Sinar Harian had also reported yesterday that many products being sold on online platforms such as Shopee and Lazada have started to increase in price.

“A TikTok video by MCA president (Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong) discussing this issue had also received various reactions with over 1.5 million views, which further show the people’s concern about this matter,” she added.

“It is disappointing that the government’s implementation of taxes did not take into account the wellbeing of the people. A series of comprehensive studies should be carried out to understand the reliability and efficiency of the system before its introduction.”

Previously, Bernama reported that Malaysia will start charging a 10% sales tax on low value goods sold online from Jan 1, 2024 as per an announcement by the Customs department.

Malaysia was supposed to impose the 10% LVG tax on goods sold below RM500 online effective April 1, 2023, under the 2022 Budget 2022, but it was postponed indefinitely by the Customs department in March last year.

In the frequently asked questions (FAQ) on the LVG sales tax published on its website on Nov 6, 2023, the department said the imposition of sales tax on LVG would start on Jan 1, 2024, although the sales tax legislation on LVG had come into force from Jan 1, 2023.

The Customs department defines LVG as all goods – excluding cigarettes, tobacco products, intoxicating liquors, electronic cigarettes, and preparation of a kind used for smoking – which are sold at a price not exceeding RM500, and are brought into Malaysia by land, sea or air. – Jan 5, 2024


Main pic credit: BusinessToday

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