KUALA LUMPUR: The Royal Malaysian Customs Department has refunded RM4 billion to 54,603 Goods and Services Tax (GST) registrants until March 3, 2019, while the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) has paid out RM3.9 billion in income tax refunds until Feb 28, 2019.
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the income tax refunds involved 75,776 cases, comprising 38,104 companies and 37,672 non-company cases.
"The tax refunds paid out showed that the Pakatan Harapan government has not misappropriated the (special) dividends from Petronas and is sincere in meeting the promise to return the tax refund arrears to the people and Malaysian companies.
"On the contrary, this move has resulted in a positive impact to Malaysian businesses and will contribute to economic growth,” he said in response to a question from Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman (BN-Pasir Salak) at the Dewan Rakyat today.
The government received RM8 billion in special dividends from Petronas from Jan 1 to Feb 28, 2019. During the 2019 Budget presentation, the Finance Ministry said Petronas would pay RM30 billion in special dividends to the government to be used to settle GST arrears and income tax refunds that were estimated to reach RM37 billion this year.
Lim said the RM37 billion arrears in income tax refunds over the last six years and GST refunds over the last three years resulted from the previous government’s financial mismanagement.
Meanwhile, he said outstanding GST refunds as at March 4, 2019, amounted to RM22.15 billion involving 298,457 statements from 168,839 registrants.
"The amount claimed by the 100 companies with the highest claims which remained unpaid but approved for payment totalled RM9.36 billion involving 1,028 statements,” he said
Lim said GST refunds as at May 31, 2018, totalled RM19.4 billion involving 120,000 registrants.
"In August 2018, the Customs Department determined the outstanding amount at RM19.4 billion following verification, filtration and in-depth checking for the (GST) refunds.
"Just because there were insufficient funds in the GST Refund Trust Account, this amount was not approved and not displayed on the Custom Department’s website so that the last step in repayment (approval) was not made.
"If there were enough funds, the payments would have been approved and displayed, and the Customs Department would be responsible to payout the refunds,” he added. - Bernama