Minister: Yes, keep receipts to detect unfair post-SST price hikes

Bernama pic.

GEORGE TOWN: A minister has welcomed a suggestion by a consumer group for the public to keep receipts of purchases to detect any unfair price hikes after the sales and services tax (SST) is introduced next month.

Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail lauded the idea by the Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) which urged Malaysians to adopt a receipt culture to curb business malpractices.

He said all ethical traders had to issue receipts to buyers who, in turn, ought to retain them as proof in case of any disputes that might arise after the purchases.

“Keeping your receipts can help us take action against traders who raise prices unfairly. The receipts are tangible proof of the price paid and can be used to bring errant traders to book.

“The ministry supports any move to help detect goods that are overpriced and we thank CAP for proposing this idea,” he told FMT.

CAP president SM Mohamed Idris had called on consumers to begin keeping receipts of their purchases before the SST kicks in on Sept 1 to help detect profiteering.

He also proposed that the ministry set up beat bases at popular markets so shoppers could lodge complaints right after they detect an unreasonable increase in prices.

Idris said the beat bases would also remind traders that action might be taken against them if they unfairly raised prices.

The SST is scheduled to be implemented on Sept 1. The bill was passed by the Dewan Rakyat on Aug 7 and is pending approval in the Senate. The rate will be set at 10% for sales and 6% for services.

The SST applies to only 38% of the consumer price index basket of goods and services, compared with the goods and services tax which covers 60%.