Sarawak govt to focus on strengthening Sarawakians to participate in O&G sector

Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali

KUCHING, Aug 6: The Sarawak Government will now focus on strengthening Sarawakians’ participation in the oil and gas sector following its amicable settlement of State Sales Tax (SST) civil suit against Petronas.

Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Law, State-Federal Relations & Project Monitoring) Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali said this will be done through the collaborative efforts between Petronas and Petros (Petroleum Sarawak Berhad), Sarawakians companies as well as Sarawakians.

The Sarawak government and the Comptroller of SST have withdrawn the civil suit filed by them against Petronas to recover SST for the period January to June, 2019, amounting to almost RM1.3 billion including penalties for late payment and interest.

Petronas has also withdrawn its counterclaim against the Sarawak Government and the Comptroller for wrongfully imposing SST on Petronas for sale of petroleum products for the said period.

Petronas has given written confirmation that SST for petroleum products would be paid by its seven subsidiaries, including Petronas Carigali Sdn Bhd, who are directly involved in the sale of petroleum products in Sarawak.

“The Comptroller is now making assessment of the amount of SST which each of the subsidiaries has to pay for 2019 based upon records of volume of petroleum products actually sold by them and declaration of the sale value thereof provided by these subsidiaries.

“Petronas has given written assurance that these subsidiaries will pay the SST when so assessed,” Sharifah Hasidah said in a statement today.

With the withdrawal of Petronas’s appeal against the High Court decision, Sharifah Hasidah said that affirms the State’s constitutional authority to impose SST on petroleum products.

“The termination of the legal process today to recover SST from Petronas which given an assurance that its subsidiaries will be paying the SST, the issue of the State’s rights to levy SST on petroleum products is finally settled,” said Sharifah Hasidah who is also Samariang assembly woman.

She said the subsidiaries identified by Petronas are in the process of being registered with the Comptroller as taxable persons who would be liable for payment of SST to the State Government.

She pointed that the registration process would be completed by August 15.

“Such assessment would be made by the Comptroller strictly in accordance with the provisions of the State Sales Tax Ordinance, 1998 and the State Sales Tax Regulations 1998,” she said, adding that no discount or waiver will be granted. — DayakDaily