MISIF: Delay in GST Refunds Hurting Malaysian Iron and Steel Industry

Source: The Sun Daily

23 August 2018. The Malaysian Iron and Steel Industry Federation (MISIF), which has some RM85 million worth of delayed goods and services tax (GST) refunds, views the delays in the repayment as a bane as it could impact jeopardise business operations and disrupt cash flows.

A total of 32 steel firms were affected by the delays and the aforesaid amount, and has been backlogged by several months, according to a MISIF survey.

Despite “emphatising” with the government’s ordeal over the missing billions meant for GST refunds, it urged the government to reconsider and channel back the GST refunds to members as soon as possible without delay after the government announced that the input tax credit will be returned beginning next year.

MISIF said the delay will cause tremendous hardship and uncertainties to businesses especially with the steel industry already being overwhelmed with a barrage of cost increases this year on account of the double whammy hike in energy tariffs (natural gas and electricity) which took effect on July 1, the implementation of the Employment Insurance Scheme (Jan 1) and numerous pending uncertainties relating to minimum wage and rehiring of foreign workers, as well as prevailing stringent credit access by financial institutions on the steel industry.

“The delay is untimely and continues to be a bane for exporters. It will exacerbate the existing cash flow situation, and the loss in business opportunities arising from the on-going implementation of the duty drawback mechanism for the importation of steel raw materials to produce finished goods for export purposes. All these have impaired the competitiveness and sustainability of the domestic iron and steel industry.”

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