Lim speaks at the Budget 2020 forum today.

KUALA LUMPUR: Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said today that even with the two-percentage point increase in income tax rate for those with taxable income in excess of RM2 million, the rate remains among the lowest in this region.

He said the new tax band was proposed by the World Bank, but at even a higher rate of 35 per cent.

“Even by increasing it to 30 per cent, we’re still among the lowest (compared with neighbouring countries) but we don’t believe (in) harsh and abrupt measures and we just keep it at 30 per cent,” he said at the Budget 2020 Forum here today.

He added that the government viewed the increase as being within the taxpayers’ means.

Tabling Budget 2020 on Friday, Lim said to ensure a more progressive personal income tax structure, it was proposed that a new band for taxable income above RM2 million be introduced and taxed at 30 per cent, up from the present rate of 28 per cent.

This increase will affect about 2,000 top income earners in the country.

The Budget 2020 Forum was jointly organised by Malayan Banking Bhd, CGS-CIMB Securities Sdn Bhd and RHB Banking Group to provide a platform for government officials, industry experts and corporates to share their views and expectations immediately following the tabling of the 2020 Budget. – Bernama

Lim speaks at the Budget 2020 forum today.