Calls for Malaysian government to change property taxation
By James Roberts

Calls for Malaysian government to change property taxation

Industry bodies in Malaysia have called on the government to return to the old system of charging the real property gain tax (RPGT).

Starbiz reported that officials from the Real Estate and Housing Developers Association Malaysia (Redha) and the National House Buyers Association have both suggested reverting to the previous RPGT regime would be advisable.

Chang Kim Loong, secretary general of the National House Buyers Association, told the news provider increasing the level of RPGT payable on quick sales of property has done little to reduce speculation in the markets.

Redha stressed the Malaysian government should not "interfere with the existing policies which are business friendly" given the current economic climate.

The new way of charging RPGT, which was announced in the 2012 budget, sees developers pay ten per cent tax if they sell a property they have owned for less than two years, or two per cent if it has been owned between two and five years.

After five years, the levy is no longer applied. Under the old system, it was a flat five per cent fee for real estate assets sales within five years of the initial purchase, with no tax charged thereafter.

Last month, Datuk Chor Chee Heung, the country's housing and local government minister, told the Sun Daily the government wants any increase in the value of Malaysian property to be fair, which is why it has taken these steps, such as altering the RPGT.
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