KUALA LUMPUR: At least 20 per cent of oil palm are unharvested due to labour shortage, hence additional government initiatives are needed to ensure that the industry remains sustainable.
Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said during a debate on the Supply Bill 2024 in parliament today that he hopes the matter could be resolved as soon as possible.
Mohd Shafie, who is the Warisan Party president, noted that the government allocated RM730 million to the plantation and commodity sector in Budget 2024 to enable various initiatives to be introduced to develop the palm oil industry.
Besides these improvements, he is also hoping that the taxes imposed on the palm oil industry will be reviewed.
"The palm oil sector has come under various pressures with companies being imposed a 24 per cent income tax rate, a 3 per cent windfall tax and a 7.5 per cent service tax (SST) for companies in Sabah and 5.0 per cent for Sarawak.
"The current levy rate is RM16 per tonne of crude palm oil production, and the Immigration Department charges RM2,200 per person for levy extension on workers working more than 10 years," he said.
Shafie said he is concerned that continued pressure on industry players will affect the sector’s performance, which is a major contributor to the national economy. - Bernama