Bill on tax breaks to ease Malaysians’ burden tabled

THE government has tabled the Finance Bill 2020 which provides several tax breaks to help Malaysians face the impact of Covid-19.

The Bill was tabled by Deputy Finance Minister II Mohd Shahar Abdullah yesterday and is expected to be passed in the current session which ends on Dec 15.

The Bill seeks, among others, to amend several existing laws such as the Income Tax Act to provide higher tax deductions for those undertaking reskilling courses, purchase of smartphones and computers, and going for Covid-19 vaccination.

Under Section 46(1)(f), those undertaking any upskilling tertiary course, including those related to Master’s or doctorate degrees, will be eligible for deductions of between RM1,000 and RM7,000 for the assessment periods 2021 and 2022.

Those obtaining vaccination for themselves, spouse or children will be entitled to a RM1,000 tax deduction under Section 46(1)(g) for the year assessment 2021 and 2022.

This covers vaccinations such as pneumococcal, human pappillomavirus (HPV), influenza, rotavirus and Covid-19.

Deductions on medical expenses for serious diseases are also increased from RM6,000 to RM8,000.

Also provided are tax breaks of RM2,500 under Section 46(1)(p) for the purchase of personal computers, smartphones or tablets for personal use made between June 1 and Dec 31 this year.

Sport enthusiasts will also get a tax break of up to RM500 for purchasing sports equipment between 2021 and 2022.

The tabling of the Bill comes after the RM322.5bil Budget 2021 on Nov 6, the largest in the nation’s history, aimed at weathering the impact of Covid-19.

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