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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pakatan sets up ‘anti-GST’ task force

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid  |    KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 2 -09  |  malaysianinsider

— Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is reinforcing its populist stance against the government’s move to introduce the Goods and Services Tax (GST) with the setting up of an anti-GST task force today.

PKR elections director Saifuddin Nasution, PAS research director Dr Dzuklefly Ahmad and DAP head economist Tony Pua will head the task force (pic & seated).

The government plans to table the GST Bill in Parliament this month and the debate is expected to begin in the March sitting next year. The GST will be implemented 18 months later.

Speaking at a press conference held to introduce the task force at Parliament lobby, Pua reiterated that the GST implementation must coincide with income increase.

Currently, only 1.8 million workers, or a mere 6.8 per cent of the population, pay income tax. He again repeated his argument that the GST is another way for the government to refill its drained coffers.

Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah did say that the new GST will raise approximately RM1 billion in revenue for the government per annum.

Despite this, PR lawmakers believe that the imposition of the GST will hit the poor the hardest as they will have to spend more for basic goods and services.

GST - details

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