Reveal terms and conditions of Petronas SST payment, PSB Youth urges Sarawak chief minister

PSB Youth chief Johnical Rayong said the state government should make public the terms and conditions of the state sales tax (SST) payment. — Picture by Sulok Tawie
PSB Youth chief Johnical Rayong said the state government should make public the terms and conditions of the state sales tax (SST) payment. — Picture by Sulok Tawie

KUCHING, Sept 21 — The Youth wing of Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) today asked the state government to make public the terms and conditions of Petroliam Nasional Berhad’s (Petronas) RM2.96 billion payment in state sales tax (SST) last week.

Its chief Johnical Rayong said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Openg has not been answering calls for him to reveal the terms and conditions.

“The people of Sarawak deserve an answer from the state government,” he said in a statement.

He recalled that under a joint statement issued on May 8 this year, both parties had reached an agreement on the SST, with Petronas agreeing to pay the RM2 billion to the state.

He said the statement also disclosed that both parties had agreed that the rate of SST on petroleum products provided for by the State Sales Tax (Taxable Goods and Rate of Tax Amendment No. 2 Order 2018 (Order 2018)) would be reduced in phases.

According to the joint statement, he said all previous agreements between the two parties made under the Petroleum Development Act 1974 (Act 144) were still valid and enforceable and Petronas was still recognised as having full ownership and control over national oil and gas development including in Sarawak.

He said the state government owes an explanation if it has, in accepting the payment of SST 2019, surrendered the oil and gas rights to the federal government by accepting the validity of PDA74.

Rayong, who is the state assemblyman for Engkilili, asked if the SST would be reduced in phases.

He also reminded the chief minister of a motion tabled by Asajaya state assemblyman Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah at the state assembly on November 8, 2018 that any further negotiation between the state government and Petronas must be consistent with the objectives of advancing and safeguarding the special rights and position of Sarawak as enshrined in MA63 and the Federal Constitution.

He added Abang Johari must also be reminded of the role, duties and responsibilities of the State Consultative Committee and that whatever agreements or settlements reached between the state government and Petronas must be referred to the state assembly for deliberation and endorsement.

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