2008 Budget — “Unity-driven” or “Prosperity-sharing”

For the first time in 50 years, the annual government budget has been reduced into a “social occasion” with the Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi accompanied by his wife Datin Seri Jeanne Abdullah “dropping by’ the Finance Ministry on the night of the eve of the Budget Day for a photo-op.

The 27-page budget read out by Abdullah in Parliament yesterday was themed “Together Building the Nation and Sharing Prosperity” — which contained a slew of goodies with the next general election imminent in the next six months.

DAP presented for the first time an alternative budget, themed “Malaysian First — Unity Driven Equity: Growth & Innovation”.

The main thrust of the 52-page DAP proposed Budget 2008 would be to establish the conditions of good governance that permits hardworking and talented Malaysians to get on with the business of creating wealth and succeed in life.

More importantly the government must learn to get out of the way and not intrude on the people’s activities unnecessarily. The real win-win solution is where every Malaysian learns together, grows together and reaps the rewards together.

You can download the PDF copy of the proposed DAP Malaysian First Budget 2008 here.

  1. #1 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 9:58 am

    We all know this was going to be a pre-election budget. The question really 1) Will it work? 2) What is the price especially in 2009? From the goodies, the PM is trying to spread the goodies rather than focus on one particular group. I think the result will be mixed. I don’t think this was very smart of him. My bet is that he will have to follow up these goodies with more focussed ones such as the civil service bonus and other goodies before the election. I think we can kiss the deficit projection as a dream.

    Because the deficit will be blown eventually in 2008, what will happen is that in 2009, the GST will surely be implemented to make up for the shortfall.. So vote BN, vote for GST in 2009 is for sure..

  2. #2 by Jonny on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 10:30 am

    This is a pre-election short-term gains for the rakyat. Let the rakyat reap first whatever short-term joy they can. Long-term, the raping shall continue.

    And from the looks of it, the gravy train continues. The multi-level commission structures continues. The rich and connected, gets richer. If the budget be blown to proportion of PKFZ at later stage, let it be. They are keen to grab and hold on to power as much as they could for now, short-term.

  3. #3 by sotong on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 10:35 am

    The past few decades had clearly shown the government had not been effective in carry out their policies and making fair and good decisions eg. an important social restructuring policies like NEP are being grossly abused and exploited to enrich a few, mostly politically connected people.

    It has lost its plot long ago…….until there is a major and radical reform or total overhaul of the government administration with good, responsible and transparent leadership, the country is going nowhere.

  4. #4 by madmix on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 11:16 am

    This is a RICH MAN’s budget.
    Company tax 25%, Personal tax 28%. Those mega tycoons who receive tens of millions in dividends from the companies they control will save 3 %, a huge sum of money. While the salaried will still pay 28%.
    The one tier tax will mean companies will not have sec 108 tax credits and will pay smaller dividends; this means low income people and retirees will effectively get smaller dividends. Previously they get higher dividends which the can claim back if their tax bracket is low.
    Small investors will now have to pat higher brokerage as the minimum is now RM40 (previously 12). So if he buys RM1000 shares, his effective brokerage is 4%. What is the use of having board lots of 100 now instead of 1000? what is the use of companies splitting their shares to make them more affordable? Meanwhile big buyers benefit as the stamp duty is reduced.

  5. #5 by patriotic1994 on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 11:37 am

    By saving RM4.50 school fees a year is called “Free schooling”? It is already free, for the rich. And it is so easy even for one rich man to sponsor one school.

  6. #6 by Justicewanted on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 12:01 pm

    The man in the street and non Umnoputra will not benefit much from the Budget.

    With all the multi millions allocation in the budget, the one who really benefits from the budget are Umnoputra and cronies…. as they are the one who will recieve the projects.

  7. #7 by azk on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 12:01 pm

    If DAP can come out with a budget, why not DAP start establishing a new government altogether by getting more Malays and other races into the party and start building a new cabinet.

    The Rakyat wanna kick this current corrupted regime out, but there is no alternative yet.

  8. #8 by smeagroo on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 12:33 pm

    The budget has no benefit for me. I also dont see how senior citizens can beneift much fomr a 3yr bond of 5%. They just abt breakeven with inflation rate. If they hv rm50000 in savings already considered good to many. Go check and ask ard if most of these ppl in this grp has rm50000 to spare.

  9. #9 by shortie kiasu on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 12:45 pm

    There is nothing to shout about, we are spending beyond our means in the budget.

    Take note that almost 13% of the money for spending are borrowings, not from the revenue forecasted for 2007, and that 13% amounted to RM20.5 billion. So the government of the day is spending beyond their means on borrowed money, debt!

    At the end of the end, who is going to pay the debt? The people and the tax payers of the country.

  10. #10 by citizen on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 1:11 pm

    The government should re-assess the poverty line income. For those who don’t know what I mean, the poverty line income is the level of income that is sufficient to buy the so-called minimum necessities of life. Everyting naik, gaji takde naik… sure the poverty line income changes tremendously these few years! Is our budget based on the old poverty line income 5 five years ago???

  11. #11 by badak on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 2:11 pm

    Biggest joke no more school fees,Free tax book, Ask any parents where the bulk of money goes when school reopen,

    They will say buying of unnecessary revision books ,at times which is not been use at all.THE expensive exercise books which is cheaper if its bought out side,and unnecessary fees which are charge by the respective schools.Some schools even force their students to buy all their stationery from their schools book shop, if its cheaper then outside its ok,But this items are far more expensive. Where or who do this parents complain too.The PTA YOU MUST BE JOKING

  12. #12 by manutd79 on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 4:27 pm

    Agree with comments on creating some sort of shadow cabinet. Let it be make up of capable people of all races. This is a way to show the rakyat how the opposition can deal with our country’s problem in a structured manner so that the transition to power can be more apparent.

  13. #13 by bystander on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 4:44 pm

    The Budget lacks spark or oomps. Man on the street will not feel any difference. If anything the budget is bias if one is to look at it closely.

  14. #14 by undergrad2 on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 6:01 pm

    The Prime Minster cum Finance Minster has nothing to show but cum??

  15. #15 by k1980 on Saturday, 8 September 2007 - 8:18 pm

    FDI is steadily declining. In 2006, it amounted to an estimated USD4 billion compared to USD5.5 billion in 2001
    Those who benefit most, appears to be the corporate sector. Those who need help the most – the middle and lower income groups – do not appear to benefit significantly from this budget. Private sector workers are still not getting minimum wage and Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) even though they are the main contributors to the national economy. There are no real incentives and little relief to offset the rising cost of living, inflation and other daily hardships…

  16. #16 by Jonny on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 12:09 am

    The usage of account II in EPF is a big joke. The government now acts like a bank. Encouraging its citizens to signup for the ‘credit card’.

    Pay now. Enjoy it now. Have it now. Buy the house now. House is always a good investment for the future. No doubt I agree with this. It no doubt also will spearhead the development projects (yes, ask ourselves again – who again will benefit from development projects? More undertable money for everyone)???

    The key point is – how much more would be left in EPF account? This is the case which happens to Singaporeans. The pensionsers found – they do not have much in their retirement fund and they’re forced to work past retirement age to get by.

    This shall happen to most of us. Out of 10 people. How many can actually take charge of their personal finances? We will not see the effect now. We shall later.

    Hope the government has done good in-depth study in this area.

  17. #17 by 4th_wife on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 9:21 am

    Budget is one thing but corruption is a sickness where even the best budget cannot bring the country forward. See the story that follows;-

    Paying through the nose for tools

    PETALING JAYA: Would you pay RM224 for a set of four screwdrivers?

    Probably not, but that was what the Government paid to supply tools for students at the eight National Youth Skills Institutes (IKBN) around the country, according to the Auditor-General’s (AG) report.

    The AG said the screwdrivers had a market price of RM40 and according to pictures in the report, resembled the average Philips screwdrivers you could buy in any hardware shop.

    And it does not stop there – the AG went a step further by examining the prices paid for 12 other tools and equipment bought for the IKBN project, comparing it with market prices when the procurement was done in late 2002.

    Among these were technical books consisting 10 titles that had a price tag of RM10,700 and a 3.1 megapixel digital camera that was bought for RM8,254.

    For the 13 items that the report highlighted, the Government paid RM8.39mil more than the market price at that time.

    According to the report, consultants for the Youth and Sports Ministry had reached an estimated price tag of RM399.67mil for the equipment for the IKBN project which later ballooned to RM767.98mil after two appeals by the ministry for additional allocations.

    “The ministry said more money was needed in anticipation of a bigger student population and that getting equipment from the same supplier meant prices would remain the same.

    “But there was no proof that market research was done to identify the prices of the items and equipment because minutes for the negotiation meetings were not prepared,” the report said.

    It said without the minutes, the auditing team was unable to find out if efforts were made to reduce prices.

    The AG also said that the ministry’s secretary-general (KSU) had signed off 11 contracts worth between RM7.99mil and RM74.2mil that were related to the IKBN project, on behalf of the Government.

    “The KSU only has the authority to sign contracts worth less than RM5mil. Anything larger should be signed by the minister or someone to whom the authority has been given.

    “However, during the audit, no such letter giving the authority to the KSU presented itself,” the report said.

    The report said there were also discrepancies such as one supplier being paid more than the other for exactly the same equipment.

    One example the AG highlighted showed one supplier getting RM1.24mil more than the other for identical engineering equipment.

  18. #18 by assamlaksa on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 9:26 am

    I don’t find the budget exciting.

    What is so great by reducing corporate tax rate to 25% and abolishing tax on dividend? With the current system, profit from corporate although is taxed of 27% (next year @ 26%) is translated to individual’s scale rate by declaring the profit as dividend. With the new budget, next year the profit will be tax at 26% (or 25% for year 2009) flat meaning dividend income are taxed at 26%, full stop. BTW the maximum scale rate for individuals had not been reduced to match the corporate tax rate.

    With the abolishment of threshold for service tax for professional services, all auditors, accounting firms, tax agents big or small will include 5% service tax in their bill. Increasing the cost of doing business in Msia.

    I don’t see any benefit granted to SMEs. It proposed that new SMEs and SMIs are not required to submit tax estimate and pay their monthly tax instalments for the first 2 years of operation. BTW, how many businesses can make sufficient profit to be taxed in the first 2 years? Why can’t they waive the requirement for all companies that pay tax less than say RM10,000 as this will reduce a lot of administrative work.

    Why is waiver for stamp duty for merger & acquisition applies to listed companies only?
    Oh, yes, I forgot, “vendors licensed with Petronas” are also eligible. BTW does anyone know who are these “vendors licensed with Petronas”?

    Individuals are given RM300 relief for purchase of sports and exercise equipment such as all types of racquets and balls, treadmill, exercise bike and airwalker. Our recreation fields are slowly being taken away by the connected few for development, now we are only able to do exercise at home or subscribe for membership at your nearest “sport centre”

    Why waiver of stamp duty for transfer of real properties only applicable to husband and wife? What about parents and children? Among siblings?

    What a pathetic budget. The education part sounds great but to me this appears to be partially plagiarized from DAP’s budget. The rakyat will have to thanks the DAP for this benefit. But than again, school fees is only RM4.50 per year and the new text book loan scheme will only benefit the rich as most of the poor are already enjoying the existing scheme.

  19. #19 by art-upon-mu on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 10:52 am

    Yipeeee, free education and no exam fees to pay! Such wonderful news. Now, non-Malay parents can go ahead and have more children, rather than having only one child or two children beacuse of fear that each child is an economic burden.

    Actually this free education thingy will not cost our beloved government much, because even before this new ruling, our government has been giving free education to almost all Malay or bumiputra kids, the bulk of our nation’s school going cohorts. So now, it is graciously extending free primary and secondary education to non-Malay or non-bumiputra kids, the minority.

    To non-Malay or non-bumiputra parents with school-going kids: please repeat after me, we are grateful to our beloved BN government for its generous and caring policies and we will continue to vote for BN candidates in the comong GE!

  20. #20 by ihavesomethingtosay on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 1:14 pm

    how much will the average non bumi family save from this budget?

    how much will the non bumi family have to spend next year after the toll increase and everything increase follows the toll increase?

    now in comparison.

    how much will the large corporate gained from the incometax reduction and the various tax incentives?

  21. #21 by bystander on Sunday, 9 September 2007 - 9:47 pm

    Look at it closely. Besides lacking spark, the Budget is discriminating.

  22. #22 by undergrad2 on Monday, 10 September 2007 - 10:33 am

    The PM brought his wife to the MoF for a photo ops the night before he presented the nation’s Budget??!

    Perhaps he thought he’s opening the Ministry of Finance?

  23. #23 by AnakTiriMalaysia on Thursday, 13 September 2007 - 6:52 pm

    BN (barisan neraka) is a lousy manager of Malaysia economy…

    We as Rakyat as the owner of this country must FIRE this incompetent+power abusing manager

  24. #24 by akarmalaysian on Tuesday, 13 November 2007 - 9:25 pm

    aiya…these so called goodies are only for kids…the real goodies they masuk their own poket.see it for urself whn time comes.the NEP has been implemented so long and it wud hv been or shud hv been successful if not for some greedy individuals.we still see a lot of bumis in poverty.whr does all the billions of dollars gone to?these greedy scumbags will nvr stop.its a fact they will never admit cos they always thought they cud get away with anything once they are in power.and as for education wise…i really see no difference in what the budget has to offer for non bumi parents…nothing to brag abt considered the loans and priorities given out to bumi students without them having to pay back.fair?…u figure it out urself.our government doesnt recognise talents and credibility….and yet some idiot wud go on encouraging mat rempits…the sampah of the masyarakat.nahh…thic pm doesnt impress me at all….together with his cryonies…they are really the scumbags of the masyarakat.

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