GST refunds delayed as long as 2 years, says Gerakan lawyer

KUALA LUMPUR: A Gerakan lawyer has agreed with Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng’s claim that many goods and services tax (GST) refunds were delayed for as long as two years.

However, Gerakan Youth deputy chief Andy Yong admitted he did not know whether the previous federal government had “robbed” the GST refunds as alleged by Lim.

On his Facebook post today, Yong, who is also a lawyer, said many of his clients had complained about the delays in getting their GST refunds and it had affected their businesses.

“This was so even after their appeals or clarifications. Quite often, the excuse given was incomplete documents submitted. And though this was rectified, the delays continued.

“Subsequently, most of their appeals were ignored and I have proof of the same.

“In short, it was also due to the mechanism and ineffective refund system that led to the dissatisfaction of the business community.

“But whether it was done intentionally by the past government in order to ‘rob’ is another issue to be proved.”

Yesterday, Lim alleged there was a shortfall of RM18 billion in a trust fund where GST refunds were supposed to be deposited by the then government.

He told the Dewan Rakyat that the previous government had robbed the people of their money, which was abused or given to cronies.

Lim said the Customs Department confirmed that as of May 31, GST refunds stood at RM19.4 billion although the trust account only contained RM1.4 billion.

The refunds comprised RM9.2 billion for 2018 refunds, RM6.8 billion for 2017 refunds, RM2.8 billion for 2016 refunds, and RM600 million for 2015 refunds.





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