LAST_UPDATEFri, 20 Jul 2018 6pm

Show How Grocery Became Cheaper After GST Zero-Rating – Consumer Group

KUCHING:  A consumer pressure group wants Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Salahuddin Ayub to back up his claim that prices of meat, vegetables and other essentials have dropped by as much as 50 per cent following the zero-rating of the goods and services tax (GST), reported Free Malaysia Today.

Malaysia Consumers Movement said many fresh food items were already exempted from GST before the new Pakatan Harapan (PH) government scrapped GST payment for all items.

“We think it’s a premature statement from the minister. Achieving 30 per cent to 50 per cent savings in less than a month is magic,” its president Darshan Singh Dhillon told FMT.

“It will be great if he could back up his statement with some data and share it with the public,” he said.

FMT also reported that Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) CEO Ali Salman voiced doubt over the supposed price reduction due to the zero-rating of GST.

“We have said in the past that GST was not a primary factor in increasing cost of goods and services,” he said.

He added that because the perishable items were already zero-rated before, it was unlikely that their prices would be reduced with the new government’s move.

He said prices should be determined by market forces unless there was a public emergency or a situation that warranted government intervention.

Salahuddin had said the prices of fresh produce had dropped significantly after the GST was zero-rated on June 1.

The government is set to replace the GST with the sales and service tax (SST).

-Borneo Post