The Prime Minister Must Admit The Failure Of His Economic Policy By Abolishing The GST In The 2017 Budget Next Month So As To Revive Economic Growth And Put Money Back Into The Pockets Of Wage Earners.(e/c)

Press Statement By DAP Secretary-General And MP For Bagan Lim Guan Eng In Kuala Lumpur On 27.9.2016.

BN continues to use lies to demonise the opposition and whitewash their abuse of power and corruption scandals especially 1MDB and the RM4.2 billion donation scandal. However, their lies can not cover up the reality on the ground that the Malaysian economy is in trouble, hurting ordinary Malaysians.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak must admit the failure of his economic policy by abolishing the Goods and Services Tax (GST) when the 2017 Budget is presented to Parliament next month, so as to revive economic growth and put money back into the pockets of wage earners. The economic situation has gone from bad to worse with some businesses complaining that they have not had a single profitable month for the 9 months of this year and wage earners not having enough money to make ends meet.

The BN Federal government is still in denial and continues to behave like an ostrich putting their head in the sands, by claiming that the economy is performing well with 4% economic growth in the 2nd quarter of 2016. However it is clear that the 4% economic growth does not benefit businesses and ordinary Malaysians when GST collection has dropped by 30% in the 2nd quarter.

Many economists were surprised that despite the 4% economic growth in the 2nd quarter, GST declined by 30% or RM3.1 billion from RM10.2 billion in the first quarter of 2016 to RM7.1 billion in the 2nd quarter. GST is the cause of our economic problems. The RM 3.1 billion drop(30%) in GST collection for the 2nd quarter of 2016 proves that the GST had resulted in the rakyat facing poorer business and less income, until the 4% economic growth in the 2nd quarter has no positive benefit to the people.

What is alarming is that the Customs Department remains confident of achieving the RM39 billion GST revenue target this year. Clearly the Federal government will face a shortfall in the expected revenue of RM39 billion as they have only collected RM17.2 billion from GST for the first half of this year, way below the targeted yearly revenue of RM39 billion. The Malaysian government is already facing a revenue shortfall of RM16 billion this year because Petronas will only be paying RM16 billion to the government, half of the amount contributed last year before the drop in global oil prices.

The Federal government should not try to cover the GST revenue shortfall by victimising businessmen in the form of tax investigations to squeeze more money for the BN Federal government. Many businessmen have complained of unreasonable demands and double-standards of the Internal Revenue Service(IRS), when the IRS failed to do the same on BN politicians receiving huge donations.

Worse, GST is also imposed on state governments and local government carrying out public works projects such as roads, drains and community halls even though it is not for profit but for the public benefit of the rakyat. This unnecessary cost has only imposed a greater burden on the state and local governments. For example, the Penang state and local governments as well as state agencies have to pay RM48 million yearly in GST to the Federal government.

Since the BN Federal government likes to sing the praises of GST because it is inplemented by many developed countries, then the BN Federal government should emulate their example of distributing the GST collected back to the states. For example, in Australia any GST collected in a state is fully returned back to the state. Here in Malaysia, state governments not only do not get a single cent of GST collected but have to pay GST.

There is no need to implement the GST if the Federal government takes firm and decisive action against corruption. The Federal government ran out of money because of corruption scandals such as 1MDB and the RM4.2 billion donation scandal. If firm action is taken against corruption, not only can BR1M payments to the poor continue but the economy can be revived by abolishing the failed economic policy of implementing GST.

LIM GUAN ENG

民主行动党秘书长兼峇眼区国会议员林冠英于2016年9月27日在吉隆坡发表文告:

首相应该坦承其经济政策已经失灵,并在下个月宣布的2017年财政预算案中撤销消费税,以便能够让经济复苏,把钱重新交到打工一族的口袋里。

国阵持续地使用谎言妖魔化反对党,并且千方百计地掩盖他们滥权及贪腐的事实,将1MDB以及42亿令吉捐款的丑闻扫入地毯下。尽管如此,他们的谎言仍旧无法掩盖真相,即马来西亚的经济已经每况愈下,并对普罗百姓带来了创伤。

首相拿督斯里纳吉应该坦承其经济政策已经失灵,并在下个月于国会宣布的2017年财政预算案中,一举撤销消费税,以便能够让经济复苏,把钱重新交到打工一族的口袋里。今天,我们的经济状况,已从“不好”进一步扩张到“萧条”,国内不少商家纷纷投诉,今年9个月完全没有在赚钱,而打工一族更是面临钱不够用的窘境。

国阵联邦政府迄今还是拒绝面对事实,继续像鸵鸟一样把头埋在沙子里。他们大声宣称国家经济表现亮眼,并在2016年第二季拥有高达4%的经济成长率。这话说得堂而皇之,但大家都明白,所谓的4%经济成长率并未惠及商家和普罗百姓,这点,我们从今年第二季消费税税收重挫30%,即可一探究竟。

对于国内经济成长率达4%,但消费税税收却狂跌一事,许多经济学者皆感到吃惊。我国的消费税税收从第一季的102亿令吉,掉到第二季的71亿令吉,跌幅达30%或31亿令吉。毋庸置疑,消费税明显就是经济崩坏的主因。第二季的消费税税收掉了31亿令吉(30%),说明了一件事实,即人民正在面对生意欠佳和收入减少的窘境,在一片水深火热中苦苦求存。而国内所谓的4%经济成长率,显然并未对人民带来任何正面的益处。

国家关税局之前言之凿凿地强调,他们有信心在今年达成收取390亿令吉消费税税收的目标,这种说法已对我们响起了警钟。显而易见的,联邦政府在年底之际,必然会面对税收不如预期的390亿令吉,因为在这半年(两季)来,消费税只收取了172亿令吉,低于原先的目标。而今年,国油仅会上缴160亿令吉予政府,比全球油价下跌前少了一半。

联邦政府不能因为消费税税收不足,而把矛头放在商人之上,对他们做出各种千奇百怪的调查,以压榨他们,为联邦政府收取更多的金钱。许多商人已经怨声载道,对有关当局不合理与双重标准的态度感到不满,尤其看到税收局没有对收取巨额捐款的国阵政客采取行动时,他们更是火上添油。

更糟糕的是,州政府及地方政府在公共工程方面,如建设道路、沟渠及民众会堂,即使不是为了获利而是让人民获益却也被征收消费税。这不必要的成本开销无疑只是加重了州政府及地方政府的负担。例如,槟城州政府、地方政府及州政府官联机构每年得缴交4800万令吉给联邦政府。

既然国阵联邦政府喜欢歌颂消费税只因为它也在先进国家实施,那么国阵联邦政府就应该同样效法这些先进国家将所征收的消费税拨回给州政府。例如在澳洲,一州所征收的消费税将悉数拨回给该州,相反的在马来西亚,州政府不但无法从征收的消费税中获得一分一毫,反而还要缴交消费税。

如果联邦政府坚决打击贪污,根本就不用征收消费税。联邦政府之所以“钱不够用”是因为MDB的贪污丑闻及420亿令吉的捐款丑闻。若我们力打贪腐,我们不仅可以给予一马援助金,还能撤销失败的经济政策——消费税,让经济得以复苏。

林冠英

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