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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Consumers urged to take measures to overcome GST impact

Published: Wednesday March 5, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM 
Updated: Wednesday March 5, 2014 MYT 7:46:15 AM
Giving info: Choong conducting a seminar on GST.
CONSUMERS are urged to form groups or clubs to cushion the impact of goods and services tax (GST), which will be implemented next year.

Tax consultant Dr Choong Kwai Fatt said consumers should unite and exert appropriate pressure on retailers to reduce prices of products.

“For instance, consumers could come together and negotiate with the retailers to obtain a lower price for a product if they were to purchase it in bulk.

“Retailers will be willing to reduce its profit margin in order to seize the business opportunity,” he told reporters during a seminar on GST at Syuen Hotel on Saturday.

The talk was jointly organised by TH Yew Taxation Services Sdn Bhd.

Choong said the middle-income group, which formed the largest social class in society, would be affected by the GST the most.

“The rich have greater spending power and the poor are given various governmental subsidies and financial assistance.

“The middle-income individuals, earning between RM4,000 to RM9,000 per month however, do not benefit from anything and yet have to pay all kinds of taxes.

“I am afraid that such a situation would lead to a new poverty group in the country,” he said.

The Government should provide greater tax rebates for individuals earning a monthly salary within the range, he suggested.

He said consumers should also learn to be more prudent in spending.

“They should shop for items based on what they need and not what they want,” he said.

Meanwhile, Choong urged business operators to be prepared for the GST registration, which would run from May 1 till Dec 31 this year.

“Registration should be done as early as possible, so that operators would have sufficient time to inform their debtors, suppliers and bankers their GST number,” he said.

He also advised business operators to hire professional accounting firms to handle the registration process.

TH Yew & Co chartered accountant Yew Teck Huat was also present at the seminar.

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