Govt should balance assistance between B40, M40 groups, says senator

KUALA LUMPUR, March 20 — The government has been urged to balance assistance between the B40 and M40 groups in helping them face the current economic challenges.

Senator Datuk Lim Pay Hen said the action was necessary as the M40 group was the most affected by the current situation.

“The M40 group needs to pay taxes, but at the same time, they are excluded from various aids,” he said during the session discussing the Motion of Thanks for the Royal Address in the Senate today.

Meanwhile, he also suggested that the government halt all forms of tax increases for now, as the value of the ringgit was still affected.

Touching on the increase in service tax from six per cent to eight per cent which came into effect on March 1, he said it had affected various sections of society, especially the B40 and M40 groups.

He said this was because even though the government had announced tax exemptions for various basic goods and services, including food, drinks and telco services, there were still services that required attention.

“I have heard many complaints from the people regarding the increase in the price of insurance and takaful where these services are no longer limited to the T20 group but the majority of the M40 also have these protection plans. Therefore, with the increase in the price of insurance and takaful this is burdensome because it is included in the basic elements of the people’s finances.

“It not only involves life and medical insurance but also car insurance, which is mandatory for everyone, including those from the B40 group who own cars, and when this tax increases, it affects all groups,” he said.

Meanwhile, Senator Md Nasir Hashim said that although the increase in service tax to eight per cent did not involve food and drink, it indirectly affected traders’ logistical operations.

“Imagine if nasi campur traders are subject to this tax increase of eight per cent, for (aspects related to) logistics, it will definitely increase the cost of transportation and others. Surely, they (traders) will also raise the (sales) price,” he said.

The Senate conference continues tomorrow. — Bernama




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *