While it raised Selangor government’s revenue, political economist Isham Jalil blames the state’s high property-related taxes and other rates to the increased cost of living there.
The hike in night market lot rents, for instance, had forced traders to increase the prices of goods. The increased costs have squeezed businesses, which eventually affected consumers, he said.
“This has led to the high cost (of living), especially in the city areas.”
The opposition had raised property-related taxes in Selangor when it took over the state following the 2008 general elections, said Isham, who served in the Economic Planning Unit within the Prime Minister’s Department.
He noted that the property-related taxes in Selangor as well as Penang, which is also controlled by the opposition, were not as high when Barisan Nasional (BN) was at the helm.
Meanwhile, the development expenditure of the two states were smaller compared when BN was in charge.
“That’s why I always mention that the BN-led government is always (good) for growth and is business friendly. As for the opposition-led state governments, they are bad for the economy, business and the people,” said Isham.
Aware that the Chinese community is concerned of the cost of doing business, economy and cost of living, the government had created a special Cabinet committee that will study the rising cost of living.
Image sourced from Concorde Hotel.
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