PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Najib Razak (pic) believes that the Pakatan Harapan Government may have spent the "missing" RM18bil to make up for fiscal shortfalls after zero-rating the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in June.
The former finance minister said this could have happened when businesses filed their tax refunds to try to claim it immediately as soon as GST was zero-rated in June.
"The Government lost a source of income for three months, and it may have spent funds from the consolidated revenue account.
"These funds are supposed to be channelled to a GST refunds trust account for its monthly expenditure," said the former prime minister in a statement on Friday (Aug 10).
He also claimed that the Pakatan Government is facing challenges fulfilling large requests for GST tax refunds.
He said that GST collections are channelled to the Government's consolidated revenue account, and these funds are transferred to a GST refund trust account on a monthly basis to meet tax refund payments.
Najib said that this is in accordance with the law as spelt out in the GST Act 2014.
"But as usual, the Barisan Nasional government was blamed for the mistakes even though it is the Pakatan government's fault.
"No monies or funds were 'robbed' because GST collections were channelled to the consolidated revenue account," said Najib.
On Tuesday (Aug 7), Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng claimed the previous administration had "robbed" and "misappropriated" the input tax credit amounting close to RM18bil.
Lim had said this during his winding-up debate on the Sales Tax Bill 2018 in Parliament.
"If this claim is untrue, then Lim deceived the Parliament when he made that allegation," said Najib.
Najib said Pakatan would probably add the "missing" RM18bil to the RM1 trillion national debt figure as an excuse for not fulfilling promises made in its election manifesto.
He added that he would be willing to cooperate with any MACC or police investigation into reports lodged on the matter in his capacity as the former finance minister.