Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali

KUCHING: The decision by Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) to withdraw its appeal against the Kuching High Court’s ruling that Sarawak is entitled to collect sales tax on petroleum products is a positive move, commented Assistant Minister of Law, State-Federal Relations and Project Monitoring Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali.

“It is an indication of a better working relationship and understanding between the Sarawak government and Petronas,” she said in a statement Monday (Aug 3).

Hasidah said this also indicated Petronas’s acknowledgement and recognition of the state’s constitutional right to impose the sales tax on crude petroleum products.

“All things considered, I see this as a clear and positive way forward for all.

“For us, rest assured, we will always protect Sarawak’s rights and put Sarawak’s interests first in all our endeavours,” she said.

She added before all things considered, Petronas recognised and agreed to be bound by the state laws.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing said Petronas’s withdrawal of the appeal was just a formality.

“This allows Sarawak to reciprocate by withdrawing ours,” he said.

Bernama reported that Petronas withdrew its appeal against the Kuching High Court’s ruling that Sarawak was entitled to collect sales tax on petroleum products.

It is also reported that at the same time, Sarawak government also withdrew its cross-appeal over jurisdiction issue of the High Court on state sales tax (SST).