More than 500,000 taxpayers declare income over tax amnesty

IRB encourages domestic taxpayers with tax compliance issues to participate in the programme

by SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH/ Pic by ARIF KARTONO

More than half a million taxpayers have declared their income through the Inland Revenue Board of Malaysia’s (IRB) Special Voluntary Declaration Programme (SVDP).

IRB CEO Datuk Seri Sabin Samitah said the programme focuses primarily on taxpayers with overseas bank accounts and employees with income derived from Malaysia.

“The response from the public is very encouraging as there were approximately 580,000 participants recorded by the IRB as at May 5, 2019.

“More taxpayers are expected to join this programme at the end of the period,” he said in a reply to The Malaysian Reserve recently.

Sabin added that IRB encourages domestic taxpayers with tax compliance issues to participate in the programme to begin a new tax assessment.

“The government welcomes domestic taxpayers who do not have overseas bank accounts but wish to participate in this programme in order to resolve their tax compliance issue and start afresh,” he added.

Sabin highlighted that the programme is a “golden opportunity” for taxpayers to reduce their income burden through reduced penalty rates.

“Taxpayers should grab this golden opportunity and participate in the SVDP, which is able to help them in reducing their tax burden through a reduced penalty,” he said.

Last month, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the Cabinet had agreed to extend the voluntary programme until Sept 30, 2019.

According to Lim, as of March 31, a total of 381,979 taxpayers voluntarily disclosed their undeclared income to the agency.

Initially, the penalty rate of 10%, which was reduced from 300%, was applicable to declarations made before March 31.

The rate was then revised to 15% for filings made between April 1 and June 30, while the filings between July 1 and Sept 30 have been set at 45%.

In January, the IRB collected a total of RM206 million from companies and individuals via the programme which was introduced in November 2018.

Previously, Sabin mentioned that the IRB could collect up to RM10 billion from the expected one million taxpayers.

Under the SVDP, individual taxpayers are required to disclose all undeclared incomes made until Dec 31, 2017, while corporate taxpayers have to disclose all incomes for the accounting period which ended on March 31, 2018.

The individuals or companies, who are participating in the SVDP, will also not be subjected to any audit or investigation.

For any declaration made after Sept 30, taxpayers will be penalised with rates ranging from 45% to a maximum of 300%, as provided under the existing tax laws.