Tuesday, November 24, 2009

On Real Property Gains Tax and GST

I had the opportunity to speak in Parliament last Thursday during the committee stage debate on the Ministry of Finance. During the first part of my speech above, I spoke on the Government's intention under the 2010 budget announced by the Prime Minister to impose a new flat 5% tax on all gains derived from the sale of property in Malaysia (it has been tax free for the past few years at least). I also raised the issue of the impending implementation of a Goods and Services Tax (GST) which was also highlighted in the Budget although no definite time-frame has been mentioned.

The Hansard text, if you prefer reading the speech rather than listening to it, is available here from page 48 to 51. I'll blog on the 2nd part of my speech and the Ministerial reply to my queries soon.


Anonymous said...

The biggest hairbrain idea? That Najib thinks he is qualified for the job he got!!!

JinHou said...

I share your frustration on the inconsistencies of the policies of the Malaysian government. However, I find your reasons in opposing the real property gains tax pretty weak. It seems like you’re opposing the tax just because it puts off foreign investors. You seem to view highly of foreign investors, perhaps you are of the opinion that the growth of our economy is beholdened to them.

I think as a DAP MP, a party supposedly founded on socialist principles, your priority should be to the rakyat first before corporate interest. The only motive for foreign investors to come to our shores is profit, not social justice. Hot money in real estate encourages speculation, and this will in turn drive up prices of homes. In the end, the poor will not be able to afford a place to stay in their own land. A good example for this is Shanghai.

The flip-flops suck, no doubt. But this tax is a move in the positive direction. Since everyone needs a roof over his/her head. How about amending the law so that the trade of the first house is not taxable, but the subsequent houses are? That would curb speculation while safeguarding the interest of the poor.

I agree wholeheartedly with your opposition against the GST.

Jin Hou – (Jin Hui’s brother)