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Malaysian Customs warns businesses of new GST registration before deadline

Malaysian Customs warns businesses of new GST registration before deadline

PETALING JAYA: Malaysian Customs Department has urged the business men to quickly sign up new Goods and Services tax before the deadline of 31Dec or ready to paid fine here the other day.

Customs Department director-general Datuk Seri Khazali Ahmad said: “Even if you are busy with the holidays, just take a few minutes to settle this.”

Even if business owners were not in their home state, they could still register at any Customs office around the country as long as they had the necessary documents and information.

At a special forum on the GST held in Ipoh here the other day, Khazali warned that stern action would be taken against operators that used the GST as an excuse to increase prices or promote their business.

“I have seen billboards along the road that urge people to buy furniture before GST is implemented,” he told reporters after the event.

“This will create unnecessary confusion among the people and the Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Ministry has been notified about it,” he said, adding that these billboards had been torn down by the local authorities.

Khazali said the ministry would come out with regulations for businesses not to raise prices three months before and two months after the GST imposition in April.

“This is to enable the ministry to monitor the prices and the market closely as well as to address any teething problems that may appear.

“Unless there is a sudden sharp increase in petroleum prices, no business is allowed to hike prices,” he said.

Khazali said a list would be published in the print media in mid-January to allow the people to learn about zero-rated goods.

Meanwhile, GST director Datuk Subromaniam Tholasy said late registration would incur up to RM15,000 in compound or if taken to court, a RM30,000 fine or two years’ jail, or both.

“We are starting our fourth registration drive early next month. Under the GST Act, businesses can be force-registered if they exceed the threshold of RM500,000 in yearly turnover,” he said.

He said the department did not want to penalise businesses, but late registration would leave it with no other choice.

“If they wait until after Dec 31, it doesn’t matter if they come forth to register or we register on their behalf – they will be fined,” he said.

“To register by 2014 would give businesses three months to prepare for GST. Late registration may also result in businesses losing out on any incentives given.”

Subromaniam said of the 45,000 businesses that had yet to register, a majority of them were contractors, food and beverage operators, retail outlets, tuition centres and independent doctors who provided services to hospitals.

256,191 businesses have registered for the upcoming GST here the other day.