Your reliance on oil, return to SST reason for economic slump, Umno senator tells Pakatan

Umno’s Khairul Azwan Harun has blamed the PH government’s reliance on petroleum-related revenue for the economic slump currently faced by Malaysia. — Picture by Razak Ghazali
Umno’s Khairul Azwan Harun has blamed the PH government’s reliance on petroleum-related revenue for the economic slump currently faced by Malaysia. — Picture by Razak Ghazali

KUALA LUMPUR, May 16 — Umno’s Khairul Azwan Harun has blamed the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government’s reliance on petroleum-related revenue for the economic slump currently faced by Malaysia.

The senator also said that Malaysia is suffering from the return to the Sales and Services Tax (SST) regime from Goods and Services Tax (GST), which he said has worried foreign investors.

“Malaysia is still suffering from the PH’s decision to return to SST. What started out as a laughable move has now turned to international investor concern that the people in PH would rather side with public misconception rather than stick to sound economic policies,” he said in a statement.

“The 2019 PH budget has also failed to appease investor concerns. We are now more dependent on petrol revenues.

“For all the faults of the previous government, you cannot take away the fact that BN implemented GST so the economy would not be dependent on this one source of income,” Azwan added.

In its Fiscal Outlook 2019 report released in November last year, Putrajaya announced that it was expecting to rely more on petroleum-related revenue in 2018 and 2019, compared to 2017.

Oil contributed to 21.7 per cent of total revenue last year, compared to just 15.7 per cent in 2017 and just 14.6 per cent in 2016.

This year, it is predicted to jump up to 30.9 per cent of total revenue. Without the RM30 billion special dividend announced last year, the value is estimated at 19.5 per cent.

However, Putrajaya said petroleum-related revenue will still be make up a lower portion than the annual average of 34.6 per cent recorded between 2009 and 2014.

Azwan also claimed that PH’s alleged indecisiveness and internal politics are major factors behind the slump as well.

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