‘In­fla­tion rate has nor­malised’

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

MALAYSIA’S in­fla­tion rate has nor­malised af­ter 18 months of im­ple­ment­ing the Goods and Ser­vices Tax (GST), said Fi­nance Min­is­ter II Datuk Seri Jo­hari Ab­dul Ghani.

He said there was a dras­tic hike in prices of goods in the ini­tial stages of GST im­ple­men­ta­tion, boost­ing the cost of liv­ing and lead­ing to a rise in the in­fla­tion rate.

“But to­day we see our in­fla­tion rate has come to a nor­mal level which is ap­prox­i­mately at 2%,” he said in re­ply to a sup­ple­men­tary question by Datuk Ab­dul Hadi Awang (PASMarang) who said al­though the GST im­ple­men­ta­tion had pre­vented traders and busi­ness­men from evad­ing tax pay­ment, it has caused high in­fla­tion bur­den­ing the poor, es­pe­cially stu­dents.

“I don’t agree with that. At the start of the GST im­ple­men­ta­tion, we saw a dras­tic in­crease in prices of goods.

“Pre­vi­ously when the gov­ern­ment im­ple­mented the Sales and Ser­vices Tax (SST), many traders evaded pay­ing it and when they had to fully pay GST, they hiked prices to cover costs,” Jo­hari said.

He added the SST sys­tem was not ef­fec­tive as there were pay­ment leak­ages.

Ac­tion against IS mil­i­tants has been taken by the Home Min­istry through the po­lice, es­pe­cially the counter-ter­ror­ism unit, says Ah­mad Zahid.

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