KUALA LUMPUR: The country's current challenging economic situation, which has pushed the cost of living up, is due to external factors, says Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan(pix).

He said the government would not take actions that would cause sufferings to the people as this would reduce public support for them.

"We understand that the government reacts according to its capacity in this uncertain economic climate due to the prevailing challenges.

"This situation has to be translated to reduced subsidies or restructuring of subsidies, and this is our response to the external factors," he said at the First Session: Economic Discussion at the Ummah Agenda Empowering Convention 2.0.

During the question-and-answer part of the discussion, Abdul Rahman said revenue collected from the Goods and Sevices Tax (GST) managed to save the country's finances following the drop in the world market oil price since 2014.

The minister said the country's revenue of about RM40bil from petroleum sale had declined by half following the fall in prices.

"Imagine losing half of your salary every month without prior notice or announcement. This is what has happened to the country's oil revenue. The GST has saved us and our country's history will commend our party leaders for daring to create the GST," he said. - Bernama

the source : www.thestar.com.my