Guan Eng has statement recorded on ‘missing’ RM19 bil in GST refunds

Lim Guan Eng says former PM and finance minister Najib Razak must explain his role in failure to pay the GST refunds.

PETALING JAYA: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng today had his statement recorded by police over the “missing” RM19.25 billion in goods and services tax (GST) refund trust account.

In a statement today, he said he told police this had affected payments to 121,429 companies and individuals.

He said they did not get their refunds since 2015.

Under the GST Act 2014, he said the refunds of input tax should have been made within two weeks.

He said the unpaid GST claims for 2015 were RM610 million (3% of total claims), for 2016 it was RM2,821 million (15%), for 2017 it was RM6,782 million (35%) and for 2018 (up to May 31) it was RM9,184 million (47%).

Lim said the government faced a shortfall of RM19.25 billion because there is only RM148.6 million in the GST refund trust account.

“The federal government is working hard to return the RM19.4 billion beginning next year because the money does not belong to the government but to the people.”

He urged former prime minister and finance minister Najib Razak to answer questions about why the refunds were not returned to these companies and individuals.

He wanted Najib to state whether he had authorised that the GST refunds should not be made within two weeks, as required by the law.

“Did Datuk Seri Najib give the approval that the GST refunds not paid back since 2015 be recognised instead as government revenue and used as the government pleased?”