Finance minister: Study on SST exemptions, reductions to be completed by year end

Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng speaks during the Sale & Service Tax media briefing at the Ministry of Finance August 30, 2018. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng speaks during the Sale & Service Tax media briefing at the Ministry of Finance August 30, 2018. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUCHING, Sept 5 ― The study to reduce or remove the Sales and Service Tax ( SST) on several types of products was expected to be fully completed by the end of the year, says Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.

The study on whether the Customs Department would exempt tax on a certain product should be in-depth as it has very wide implications, he told reporters after attending an SST briefing with the Finance Minister at a hotel here tonight.

Guan Eng said the government would continue to listen to proposals and views of the people on SST in the effort to improve the effectiveness of its implementation which came into force on Sept 1.

According to him, the study included identifying the types of products in which taxes could be reduced and exempted such as rethreaded tyres which was lowered to five per cent from 10 per cent. 

He also said that 250cc motorcycle was also exempted from SST while tax on its accessories was decreased from 10 per cent to five per cent.

Guan Eng also repeated that SST was more people friendly compared to GST and said it was an old taxation system but its scope had been improved to have more goods and services exempted from tax.

 Asked if he was happy with the implementation of SST since four days ago, he said not 100 per cent but gave his assurance to continue improving it.  

On the appointment of special SST officers in each state as he proposed, Guan Eng said they would be appointed from among Customs officers with wide experience on SST besides the state Customs director.     

He said the officers would act as a spokesman to provide information on SST. ― Bernama