Sunday, 9 September 2007

Budget for you, spending for them

Warning: Rather long and boring entry ahead.

Some call it an exciting budget… some call it a ‘poor’ budget… some even call it the people’s budget… most call it an election budget. No matter how we call it, what does the budget means to you and me? How exactly does it impact a regular Malaysian?

I do not claim to be an expert but I think these are a few budget proposals which a regular Malaysian like you and me should know about…

For those who have purchased property before, you will know that there is a tax in the form of ‘stamp duty’ which needs to be paid. Yes, it’s a tax which the buyer needs to pay. For a property worth RM250,000, you will probably needs to pay stamp duty of about RM4,000 (this is an estimate only). The budget proposed that a 50% reduction of stamp duty for property worth not more than RM250,000 so our pocket can save about RM2,000 we purchase a property worth not more than RM250,000. Not a bad move.

Better if you are transferring properties between husband and wife. Stamp duty will be fully exempted from such transactions. Whether there will be any restrictions on the value of property transferred, yet to be known.
Next, the widely discussed abolishment of school fees and free text books for all. It seems that many claimed that the savings from this proposal is too minimal to be felt and is widely regarded as an election proposal. Indeed, this proposal will not benefit urban folks much but it does means a lot to the non-urban population. Vote winning formula? Perhaps… but then again, shouldn’t schools be totally free to begin with?

The proposal which was supposed to make us all feel very good is that EPF contributors will be allowed to withdraw balances from Account 2 to pay monthly housing instalments. Sounds like a good idea. But if you were to think properly… the government is basically allowing us… to use our own money… to pay for our own house. And we are supposed to feel thankful about it? You tell me…

For those of us who have children, there may be good news for you. Scholarships offered by the government via JPA will be increased from 5,000 to 10,000 with significant increase in allowances given to overseas students. There are a couple of JPA sponsored students who read AZAIG, but there were also a lot of AZAIG readers who failed to get a JPA scholarship recently (you know who you are). Will this really benefits your children and mine? I shall leave that to you.

I read in a blog saying that one does not need to worry about fees anymore because one of the budget proposal was a tax relief for education fees to all post-graduate studies of up to RM3,000. To put things into a better perspective… you will probably only be able to actually get a tax benefit if you earn a monthly income of perhaps… RM5,000. Even that… your savings from this relief is probably about… RM400. Again, this is an estimate. So… do you really don’t need to worry about your fees? Okay… better than nothing right?

On top of that, there is also a tax relief for purchases of sports equipment of up to RM300. The tax savings for that, assuming you are earning RM3,000 a month, will probably be about RM24. If you earn lower… then the savings will be lower lor…

One very peculiar proposals stood up amongst the rest… beginning 2008, public listed companies will be required to disclose their employment composition race and gender, as well as programmes undertaken to develop domestic and Bumiputera vendors. I wonder why.

Those were the few things which I think you should know. There was a single-tier tax system being proposed but it will be too technical to discuss here. Also,
I said that there will be reduction of individual tax rate but it didn’t happen. Instead, there was a reduction of corporate tax rate which I am sure it will not affect anyone of us here. If the reduction of corporate tax benefits you, I am sure you don’t be reading blogs. As expected, GST was not announced.

The other parts of the budget are mostly about how the government is going to spend our their money.

On a related note, the
mainstream newspaper gave a very brief picture about how the government ministries spend their money. Apparently, our government is a generous one, always paying premium… extra premium for stuff. To be really honest with you, I am really surprise the mainstream actually reported this.

Pictures courtesy of TheStar.

Among some of them which deserves to be highlighted was RM5,741 for a car jack worth RM50. I think I want to sell car jacks to the government. Maybe I should sell books too cause the government also purchased technical book sets worth RM417 for a whooping RM10,700. And not just 1 set… 10 sets bought! Makes us wonder how much the government will spend to buy those text books for students, don’t you think?

47 comments:

Sunshine said...

wow... i also want to sell things to the gov.... just one car jack per month is enough...

spookygrace said...

the 2008 budget plan it seems like.."guan ngo pei xi". What gov hd planned, do not influence. It looks like, we are gaining benefit on that, but, think it indirectly... it is still the same.. somore com out parole system to cut cost (that will affect us lor)....=.="""

ardy said...

Heh. That's why I try very hard not to read the newspaper, and watch the news. Instead, I bloghops and hope that the blogsphere will spare me the gory misadventures of the government, and the country, and the stupid and hypocrite politicians.

Of course, all that ended when I came across your blog ;) Not that I'm complaining, but I don't think it's healthy for me to be mad and furious at all time knowing that my money, and yours too, and everyone else's have been squandered left right top and bottom.

No wonder the rich has become richer, and the poor has become poorer.

Sunflower said...

I've been trying to figure out how the EPF thingy could possibly work. Even supposing you buy a house only worth RM250,000 -- in KL/PJ, this is like hoping for elephants to fly -- where got people got that much money in their EPF Account 2? How many months of withdrawal are you gonna be able to do before milking the EPF account dry? Bear in mind that when you pay monthly housing installments you will end up paying more than the RM250,000 because you're paying INTEREST to the bank as well. Chee sin. Not workable. Cannot imagine what they were thinking when they proposed this.

pikey said...

i was quite shocked when the paper reported the way OUR money was spent. Certainly, there's a lacking of procedures and transparency here. Why Why is it that when the AG expose this mess then only the DPM reply to it? Is there a consistent monitoring of the budget?

Very poor management... even the KSU can approve and amount above the authorised limit... only when the AG finds out then only got the news...

penang-kia said...

I really like the New Sunday Times headlines(Almost 10b in our pockets).
Wtf..are they talking about.Isn't that our hard earn, sweat and blood money deducted from our wages?
Now it seems like they are doing us a favour..so that we can bla..bla..bla..
Are they holding us on ransom?Are they..?
I absolutely need grass..!!

penang-kia said...

sorry,the second last lines should read as;
Are they holding our money as ransom?

ethel said...

I didn't know screwdrivers can be THAT expensive. Mind you, it's not a round figure too. Ada Ninety four cents lagi!

Ey zewt, I think you need to start a new business with our govt lah. Guarantee can become rich!! (you can finally say bye-bye to your current job too! Woot!) :P

Jemima said...

I think it will be interesting to know how much the govt is actually paying for a full set a NS trainee's uniforms incl the footwear in comparison to the actual costs. :p

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

haha..you forgot to add that transfer of property for husband to wife is only exempt from stamp duty if its is done for "love and care"..

abt the gender 1 also..its known as corporate social responsibility wor..is it? i think its just a way to kick us out..

narrowband said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
narrowband said...

Thanks for highlighting some Budget details. Some are pretty insignificant, but like you said, better than nothing haha. Well I'm sure it'll bode well with the lower-income group.

On the (mis-)management of the People's funds, I was damn shocked to see the figures. I mean, we can expect to see a little bit of jacking-up of prices when it comes to Govt contracts, but such amount is simply mind-blowing. I wonder if those who're guilty will be made to face the music.

By the way, Zewt, you want to sell things to the government? Hmm. You meet 'requirement' ah?

Anonymous said...

I have a question. Do any of you feel any benefit from this budget? I have a feeling that somehow our govt feels that they will lose badly in the coming election and in order to minimise the damage, they are "begging" the rural voters to back them with minisque sum. This is why, they rather not help the people who will feel the real impact i.e. urban folks.

My personal opinion is petrol price will DEFINITELY go up come 1 Jan 2008.

On the extra disclosures, I am not sure how that will make any PLC more competitive considering most developed countries find disclosure of whether you are Malay, Chinese, Indian, Iban, Kadazan and DLL or whether you are male or female in any application forms as indirect discriminatory. Perhaps our Govt have a different insight on how things work.

PurpLe~MuShRooM said...

Thanks for highlithing the latest budget. Though it doesn't affect me much, but its good know whats happening back home.

cirnelle said...

There's more to that EPF thingy methinks. It's cause EPF dunno what to do with the truckloads of dough and nowhere worthwhile to invest. EPF has to promise us at least 2.5% return on our savings in their fund.... unfortunately, our "investable" markets are so small, there's shit loads of cash which goes nowhere. So... what to do? Give back lor...

tulipspeaks said...

most of us are right = its election budget! :)


btwn, i was surprised to read the same front page news. first thing came into my mind - what am i doing here? i should be selling books & car jacks to these ppl! :S


ammu.

adrian said...

What r u guys complaining about hah? This just shows what the gahmen has been saying is true all along. The gahmen cares for the rakyat! They only buy the best. (or someone got conned by those scratch and win fellas)

Anyway, if they still need a 3.1 digi camera, I got one, selling for RM7,999 only. Good deal!

Mcmercedez said...

The new budget seems like it's for the benefit of the people.. But.. things like free school and exam fees, shouldn't it be free from the beginning? In this point, I agree with you, zewt.. It should be started at the beginning..

As for the EPF thing, at the surface, it's very attractive and for this I thank to the govt.. But.. again, do you think everyone will have enough in Acc 2 to makr withdrawal every month? Does that means they're turning the EPF to a bank? With all the hassle to go there and que up and have to wait for the money to come out in what? 2 weeks? Maybe it will help a bit on the repayment, but what's the point? At the end of the day, when we retire, then not much will be left.. It's suppose to be a force saving so that when we retire, we can use that money.. This is a set back... Deal with current issue, but forget the long-term effect.. Sigh..

As for the text books, I dun think that really cost much for primary and secondary school.. So guess a bit pointless..

Just wait and see what will happen in 2008.. For sure got some bad a** will misuse this.. I wonder where they get the money from to fund all these.. Maybe later declare, increase in out income tax..

Hor ny Ang Moh said...

He!He! What to do our gov very generous wan! So should we return the favour cum erection?? Have a nice day!

Angie Tan said...

ahhh... don't we all wish to have govt contracts? we get to earn 100x as much!!

anyway, from what i saw about the budget, it really means that we have much to budget for, rather than what the govt has budgetted for itself. (^ ^)

SK said...

This Wednesday, there will be a forum organized by DAP with the title: Budget 2008, who benefits?

Do attend if you've time.

Princess Eileen said...

I think you did a very good summary of the 2008 budget. I definitely agree it should be called an election budget.

rinnah said...

Thanks for the budget round-up, zewt. I didn't find anything in this year's budget that will affect me for better or for worse. *grin*

I also wanna become govt contractor... so good profit one. LOL!

5xmom.com said...

From a parent :
1) School fees - miserable RM4.50 to RM9 bucks, keep lah, free also no diff cos they got all sort of computer charges and even expensive workbooks to pay for.

2) The EPF - faster for people to drain themselves poor in order to buy house. All these 'own properties', who benefits at the end? Gahmen lor.

3) House ownership - All mine, mine, mine. Hahaha, no diff oso.

4) Free textbook? Guess who get the tenders to supply lor. Maybe we buy, cost RM100 but Gahmen will need to subsidise RM500 per student . In the end, whose money again?

Haih..Got read they use ambulance to transport hot foods and ferry staffs?

Pookyma said...

Zewt,
if ur starting business with those garmen peeps,COUNT me in!!!!!!

Profit margin is like 25000%

Buy Rm400 can sell for RM10000....

You can quit being a modern slave in no time...

Using EPF money to buy s house is a suicie move for people who doesn't know how to manage their money properly..I bet those people gonna die regreting and sad coz they got no more pension fund to survive on..

Elween said...

who's the richest in the country? of course, the government. as long as we can cooperate with the government and working out the projects with them, definitely they will not let you down! :)

stocktube said...

actually the govn is doing us a favor by allowing suppliers to make good profit (out of their generousity) ... in turn the suppliers (or cronies?) will spend more and excite the economy and everyone wins :P

cheers

Helen said...

Yeah, I was really pissed about the last part. Summore i believe the prices are tendered. As usual, there will be no action taken. It's not a crime buying expensive things. We need the ACA to butt in...

alan zed said...

wah more than 10k untung mah. mcb.

Anonymous said...

its a worldwide disease. everyone wants to screw the government and try to get away with it. the unlucky ones get caught and sent to jail.
In the Bolehland, the government not only openly invite suppliers to screw her. At times, she eevn rewards scrers with another salivating contract. Remember Kuala Dimensi. After the RM4.6 billion rip-off in KPA, the same company was awarded a multi-million flood mitigation project in KL. Malaysia Bole.

Kenny Ng said...

I'm not aware about this time budget as I'm away from Malaysia and so busy with my work. After read all what you thought, it's quite true and I got to agree with you. Anyway, from my observation, every budget were not meant to 'rakyat', were more to their 'pocket'. I guess you know me well where I was from. At least this year alcohol no increase... so let's just go for some booze!

Cheers mate.

zewt said...

sunshine - hahaha... be ambitious a bit... sell 1000 units... then can take a few years off.

spookygrace - it will affect you one way or another. just how big the impact will be. as for parole system... it's a time bomb. long time no see you here by the way.

ardy - hahaha... sorry dude. not that i really wanna spoil your day but i think we should not ignore the truth. to the very least, we should be aware of some things... we owe it to ourselves.

sunflower - yup... it's supposed to be the most eye catching proposal... BUT... if one look at it carefully, it's actually not a very good move at all.

pikey - i am actually surprise they actually reported it. someone is going to face the music. someone wants to get rid of someone.

penang-kia - 10b of shit??? indeed... they are just giving us back our money! and we are supposed to be thankful? to grass it is!

zewt said...

ethel - but right... like some of the people here said... i dont have an uncle or an aunty in 'right places'. might not get those business.

Jemima - let me guess... RM3,000? oh... i think that's too cheap. bad quality uniform.

constant craver joe - it's just bloody racist... blatant racism.

narrowband - that's why... dont have friends or connections in the right places... will probably not get those lucrative business. hehe...

anon @ 7.58am - as early as 1 jan 2008? damn!!! it's gonna breach 2 bucks then. i think some MNCs will wanna keep those info as P&C, let's see how the gomen can break them.

"Joe" who is constantly craving said...

well..i think u r not the only 1 bringing it up..the cimb fellow also bought up the subject..but i guess there could be some positives out from it..the world can c that they r not employing the best ppl for the job..or sexist when employing..

sings *look on the bright side of life* * tu du tu du tu du tu du*..

whens lunch ar?..

zewt said...

purple mushroom - yeah... you know where your heart is no matter what.

cirnelle - someone told me this... but i rather not mention... EPF might sue me... hahaha...

tulipspeaks - but do u have connections or not? :P

adrian - yeah... they only go for quality stuff price justifies everything right? yours a second hand la.. not good enough.

mcmercedez - many ppl see the budget and from the surface, it seems good... we have to look beyond the surface to see the real impact. not many can do that. and those of us who can... cant really do anything.

hor ny - yup... cant wait for it to cum.

zewt said...

angie tan - hahahaha... very good point. time for us to do our budgeting.

SK - haha... i am sure tony can do a much better job than me.

princess eileen - this is just the major thing. there are a few other minor things which i didnt really wanna highlight.

rinnah - you have connections or not?

5xmom - just read... just stupid. i tot they will take their time... this is getting ridiculous. but i am surprise how come the AG is revealing all these stuff. could be sandiwara.

pookyma - yup... good point. use up all our money... when we retire... we will have none left.

zewt said...

elween - hi, welcome to AZAIG. yup... some of my friends are considering that option. thanks for dropping by and hope to see ya around.

stocktube - welcome to AZAIG! i like your optimism hehe...

Helen - tendered? that's all bullshit. yeah... tender... see who can give the highest commission.

alan zed - lan... u can do business with them u know. hehe.

anon @ 5.33pm - that's the way it is here. no one will be surprise. and trust me... before u know it... all will be forgotten, this one included.

kenny ng - yup... i am sure u know more on how they spend. hahaha... you can smoke and booze more... but then again, it's already very expensive ler.

constant craver joe - well, i think ppl will not care wo is not employing the best ppl... besides, we don need disclosure to know this. lunch... next week la... this week damn busy cos need to analyse the budget.

keeyit said...

Sad news.. WTF those anti-corruption and auditors doing ? Makan gaji buta sahaja...

Government assumes that we just accept whatever and we will not angry on that...

bensiu said...

Last time I heard a story about why MAS was not making any profit in fact losing so much. Apparently, Mr. PM takes care of the catering service for MAS and per each MISERABLE(i dare say) meal we have onboard costs them RM65!!!! And what are we talking about... ayam, sayur? We're only talking about economy class yah...

Now, someone is definitely buying new cars, new house, new vacations... for each car jack at RM5691 profit... who profits from the profit? YA ALLAH!

sharlydia said...

Dont u think our government is just slapping its right face with its left hand? One side of it says to implement parole system to cust down maintenance cost for prisoners; Another side reporting how luxuriously were our ministries spending money - paying for items 200-300% more than the market value! what kind of bullshit is this???

Elizebeth D.L. said...

Really appreciate your info on this post, now I am nore clear about this new budget thingy.

jam said...

Increase in allowance for the JPA scholarship only benefits those who successfully got it! May I ask how many percentage of non-bumi students will ever enjoy this benefit?

Huei said...

seems like google really don't want me to put my comment up here..maybe they scared if i condemn the *ahem* google might get sued! LOL!!!!

Huei said...

now lemme try put my original comment since the previous one went up..

haiya..where will have benefits for us wan?

their new year is coming soon..u think they dun nid money meh? how they gona survive?

look properly into their everymoves...for sure beneficial to them wan (financially)

zewt said...

keeyit - at least the auditors are doing something. i thnk i should stop reading news already.

bensiu - RM65??? woooaah... but you know... i still think sell car jack is better. eh... dont insult ppl's god la. seriously.

sharlydia - hahaha... well, that's the ironny of life here. i am getting immune.

elizebeth DL - you're welcome.

jam - sensitive la... cant talk.

huei - just wait... bonus coming.

Anonymous said...

From my analysis of the new budget for the EPF, the first few months or within a year time of 2008, the housing industry should be booming. In a much simpler explanation, Malaysia will experience an increase of GDP due to more purchase of houses(1st handed houses). Good GDP ratings means that they can boast around that our economy is doing well while other countries might not be doing good, BUT, bare in mind, this is only for the short term results. What happens in the long term is perhaps like what the US is facing now, the housing mortgage. Unwanted house due to oversupply and lesser demand cause by shortage of money and less of confident. Besides that, an even worst problems will be not enough money when retirees retire. Many people will be fool into buying houses without thinking twice or more cause by the feel good factors.

2.5% from EPF is also very very low, if not mistaken, the inflation rate is higher than the interest earned! How can they face the decrease in value of money in the future? I guess they should instead invest the money in other countries in order to earn a higher interest for the EPF holders. This will helps everyone more.

zewt said...

anon @ 5.11pm - my gosh... it never hit me... that's a very good analysis. i might wanna say that in some of the future post... thanks mate. let's hope GST remains postponed for the longest time.