Selangor Journal
Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Deputy Minister Fuziah Salleh (centre) inspecting fresh fish during her tour of a supermarket to oversee the Christmas Season Maximum Price Scheme (SHMMP) in Kuantan, Pahang, on December 23, 2023. — Picture by BERNAMA

Ministry cautions businesses unaffected by SST hike not to exploit situation

KUALA LUMPUR, March 3 — Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living (KPDN) Fuziah Salleh cautioned traders unaffected by the Sales and Service Tax (SST) hike to not take advantage by raising prices to garner extra profits from consumers.

She emphasised that such actions are irresponsible and could result in penalties if found guilty.

“Only four categories are affected by the SST increase, namely hospitality, health and well-being, training and teaching centres, and laundry services with a threshold value exceeding RM500,000.

“Those not falling within these categories, including food and beverage traders, are urged not to exploit the situation by raising prices. KPDN will enforce the law,” she stated after a walkabout at the Pahang Rahmah Madani Sales Carnival in Dataran Anjung Pusat Bandar Jengka today.

Fuziah hoped the public would be more aware of SST tax-related information and advised those facing issues regarding price hikes to lodge complaints.

She listed the following channels for complaints – WhatsApp hotline at 019-848 000, the EZ Aduan KPDN app, the KPDN hotline at 1-800-88-800, or the E-Aduan KPDN portal at eaduan.kpdn.gov.my.

She highlighted that since Ops Kesan was launched on March 1, KPDN has conducted more than 1,000 inspections nationwide, and 26 notices were issued to traders found to be in violation.

Meanwhile, in Kelantan, state KPDN director, Azman Ismail, stated that action would be taken against traders, including those in Ramadan bazaars, if there is evidence of profiteering.

Azman mentioned that although food vendors in Ramadan bazaars are not directly affected by the SST increase from six to eight percent, monitoring is still being conducted to ensure they do not take advantage of consumers.

He highlighted that under the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011, traders cannot make a profit of more than 50 percent of the cost.

“If there are traders involved in arbitrarily raising prices, we will take action under the stipulated Act.”

In Perlis, the KPDN will continue to monitor the prices of goods to ensure that no parties take advantage by raising prices after the implementation of the new SST rates effective last Friday (March 1).

State KPDN director, Norazah Jaapar, stated that their monitoring efforts began on March 1, and Ops Kesan which involved the hospitality industry, was also initiated on the same day.

Yesterday, KPDN Minister Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali was reported to have said that the ministry initiated Ops Kesan 2024 on March 1, to monitor the effects of implementing the service tax rate increase.

The focus of monitoring and enforcement is to ensure that traders at all levels do not take advantage of the situation by profiteering or increasing prices in violation of anti-profiteering legislation.

— Bernama

 

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