Big companies urged to help through windfall tax

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KUCHING: Small businesses severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic need to be assisted to ensure their survival.

Dayak Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) vice- president Datuk Janang Bungsu said unaffected big companies should extend a helping hand through a windfall tax.

“I agree with former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (on his suggestion). Certainly, the big boys must extend a helping hand to the smaller players.

“But a proper mechanism and definition (of the windfall tax) must be established in a proper and just manner,” he said on Friday (July 16).

He was commenting on whether a windfall tax should be imposed on companies making large profits amid the Covid-19 pandemic as a means to contribute to government coffers.

At the same time, Janang said the threshold of windfall tax must also be determined in a realistic manner before being imposed on the companies.

“Perhaps a detailed study and survey to gauge the real condition is necessary. A proper regulation and enactment of the law must also be developed to ensure smooth implementation.”

Dr Mahathir recently suggested that a windfall tax  be imposed on companies  enjoying extraordinary profits from the pandemic to assist in economic recovery.

He said windfall tax was not a new measure and would enable the government to tackle the health crisis without inflicting additional burden on the public.

Economist Prof Dr Jomo Kwame Sundaram said the windfall tax was required to assist the country’s recovery process in the short term.

He noted several flaws in the current tax system which only focused on indirect taxes instead of direct taxes.

“We need a progressive tax system in the long run. Meanwhile, in the short term, the government should impose windfall tax. There is no reason for its implementation to be further delayed.”

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