Govt to decide on subsidy rationalization program by Q4

KUALA LUMPUR, July 10 (Bernama) -- The government will decide on the subsidy rationalisation programme by the fourth quarter of this year and to be implemented in 2015, said Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah.

By that quarter, the government will also decide on whether RON 95 petrol and diesel should be exempted from the Goods and Services Tax (GST), which is effective April 1.

He said the government is also looking at roughly about RM2.5 billion in additional revenue from the GST in the first year of its implementation, and RM8 billion in the next.

Speaking at a press conference after officiating the National Goods and Services Tax (GST) Conference 2014 here today, Ahmad Husni said the government is looking at a certain salary level to be eligible for the subsidy.

He cited as an example, those earning RM4,000 and below alongside those who may be earning higher than this sum, and up to a certain level.

"We are now studying the subsidy rationalisation. Upon implementation, the subsidy rationalisation should benefit the people," he said.

In another development, Ahmad Husni said the ministry had started focus group meetings pertaining to the Budget 2015 such as accelerating export growth, strengthening quality private investments, leveraging entrepreneurship for growth and up-scaling human capital.

The focus is also on managing the rising cost of living, enhancing the quality of life and happiness index, youth and women in development as well as strengthening regional development, he added.

The National GST Conference 2014 is jointly organised by Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) and Tax Advisory and Management Services Sdn Bhd (TAMS).