RISING prices and complaints about the Goods and Services Tax (GST) did not escape the attention of the Umno General Assembly.

Kedah delegate Datuk Abdullah Hasnan Kamaruddin called for the setting up of a dedicated GST Board to collect and manage the tax.

He said a dedicated GST Board can, among other things, better explain to Malaysians the issues related to the tax.

“Some RM20bil in GST was collected but we do not know if the bulk of it comes from businesses or from the pockets of the people.

“The GST Board can supervise and manage the tax while at the same time help explain its importance to the people,” he said when debating the motion on the economy at the Umno General Assembly yesterday.

On the rising cost of living, the Kuala Kedah Umno division chief suggested that the Government give incentives to the 13,176 cooperatives nationwide to set up Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia-type stores.

“We hear both city and rural folks complaining about the rising cost of living and the prices of goods.

“We must create more places where people can buy essential goods at prices they can afford,” he said.

Abdullah Hasnan said the use of cooperatives would help eliminate middlemen who often push up the prices of goods.

He said the effectiveness of cooperatives was proven in the 1960s, when they were used to reduce problems caused by middlemen who bought rice from paddy farmers.

the source : www.thestar.com.my