Zero-rated GST makes parking at a private car park in SGH more costly

A copy of the parking ticket issued today. The number 7.25 indicates the time the Kuching resident was issued the ticket (7.25am).

KUCHING, July 18: The much-touted scrapping of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is supposed to reduce the cost of living, but, alas, zero-rating the GST has made parking at a popular private car park at the Sarawak General Hospital (SGH) more expensive.

A Kuching resident who went to SGH today for an appointment was shocked when the parking attendant told her that she could claim back RM3 only if she parked for not more than one hour.

Previously, the parking fee was RM5.30, including six per cent GST. The practice then was to get the parking attendant to jot down the time the parking ticket was issued. The reason for this was because if a motorist parked for not more than four hours, he or she could still claim back RM3 at the parking booth. This means the parking fee is RM2.30 only.

If the motorist parked for more than four hours, he or she cannot make any claim, meaning the parking fee is RM5.30.

Effective June 1, when the GST was zero-rated, the parking fee was reduced to RM5 (that is minus the 6 per cent per cent GST) but the carpark operator changed the maximum four-hour “rule” (to get back the RM3) to the new maximum one-hour “rule”.

When the Kuching resident asked the parking attendant for the reason, he merely replied, “Cos there is no more GST bah.”

Whatever the real reason may be, the fact remains that parking at that car park has essentially shot up from RM2.30 to RM5 since June 1. This is because it is almost impossible to return from an appointment at SGH within an hour due to the huge number of patients at the hospital every day.

“I hope the authorities concern can do something about this, or check whether the carpark operator has flouted the law,” complained the Kuching resident to DayakDaily. — DayakDaily