“Relish the gift of new taxes, utility tariff hikes from the 14-month-old Madani gov’t!”

A pro-PAS blogger has hit out at the unity government for dishing out an array of “New Year gifts” in the form of new taxes and utility tariff hikes barely one month into 2024.

Among them are (i) low value goods tax (LVGT) @ 10%; (ii) capital gains tax @ 10%; (iii) increase in sales and service tax (SST) from 6% to 8%; (iv) 8% tax for complementary & alternative medicine; and (v) high value goods tax (HVGT) @ 10%.

“Moreover, the existing M40 group who are not eligible to receive much assistance is likely to be burdened with a 5% rise in electricity tariff (for the Jan 1-June 30, 2024 period as per stated by the Energy Commission),” the blogger calling himself Profesional Istiqamah penned in his latest Facebook post.

“Most recently, the water tariff will increase by an average of 22 sen per cubic meter in Peninsular Malaysia and Labuan (effective Feb 1). This series of tax increases and that of basic utility tariffs will definitely have an impact on the purchasing power and economy of the people. Government politicians cannot lie on this.”

Regardless of the government’s reasoning and justifications, Profesional Istiqamah reckoned that the government must admit one truth.

“This is that the government led by Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Economy Minister Rafizi Ramli is experiencing difficulties in generating additional income for the country, hence is forced to take simple and uncreative measures by introducing new inefficient taxes,” opined the opposition-slant blogger.

“Even with the government having incurred an almost RM100 bil in national debt during its one-year of administration, the people are unable to savour anything from such huge expenditure.

“Interestingly, a few PH (Pakatan Harapan) economists have tried to defend the Madani government’s inability to govern by describing that its economic method follows the Robbin Hood concept of ‘stealing’ from the rich to give back to the poor.”

Profesional Istiqamah further wandered why is the Madani government not focusing on taxing the ‘super’ rich group instead by imposing the (i) dividend tax from listed & unlisted companies, (ii) inheritance tax; (iii) real property gains tax (RPGT); (iv) wealth tax; (v) corporate savings tax; or (vi) windfall tax.

“Instead, the government has resorted to exempt capital gains tax (CGT) and foreign sourced income tax (FSI) on unit trusts. Both tax breaks only benefit the rich!” – Jan 19, 2024

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