1. The Ministry of Finance is seeking comments and views on the draft Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Bill 2009 which sets out the proposed legislative amendments to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Act. We invite you to contribute comments on the proposed amendments. Your views are important as they would help improve our tax policies and legislation.
SCOPE OF THE CONSULTATION EXERCISE
2. The draft GST (Amendment) Bill 2009 covers Budget 2009 tax changes as well as other changes to existing tax policies and administration resulting from on-going review of the GST system. The tax changes are summarised as follows:
Budget 2009 tax change:
a. Zero-rating treatment for all aircrafts used wholly for international travel as well as the sale and lease of aircraft parts forming part of a qualifying aircraft;
b. GST suspension for goods temporarily removed from Zero-GST or Licensed warehouses for auctions and exhibitions;
Other tax changes:
c. Registration of a trust will be in the name of the trust to ease GST administration for trusts;
d. The current GST treatment for physical vouchers will be extended to all forms of vouchers including electronic vouchers such that GST is accounted only at the point where these vouchers are redeemed for goods or services. This will ease GST compliance for taxpayers; and
e. Taxpayers will be required to state their grounds of objection when applying for a review or revision of a decision made by the Comptroller of GST. This is in line with requirements under Income Tax Act and Property Tax Act, and will facilitate the Comptroller’s expeditious review of taxpayers’ applications.
3. The summary table lists all the tax changes and explains the amendments to the GST Act.
4. The aim of this exercise is to obtain feedback on areas of the draft legislation that could be improved in terms of clarity or compliance by taxpayers. We are primarily seeking feedback on the drafting of the legislation for the Budget 2009 tax changes and new GST treatments for vouchers as the policies have been adopted after feedback and extensive debate in Parliament, or after consultation with the relevant businesses. For the other tax changes, we welcome comments on both the policy and drafting aspects of the proposed legislative amendments.
5. We would appreciate your full support to ensure that the consultation exercise is productive and successful. Respondents are requested to follow these guidelines:
a. Please identify yourself as well as the organisation you represent (if any) so that we may follow up to clarify any issues, if necessary;
b. Make your comments clear and concise;
c. Please use the prescribed template provided to help us understand your feedback better;
d. Your comments should focus on how the legislative amendments can be better written to make them clearer and to make compliance easier or on how the tax policies can be improved (for non-Budget tax changes);
e. Please explain your points with illustrations, examples, data or alternative formulations of the amendments as far as possible.
6. This draft legislation is released only for the purpose of consultation and should therefore not be used for individual or business decisions as it does not represent the final legislation or regulations. All comments received during the consultation exercise will be reviewed thoroughly and, if accepted, will be incorporated in the Bill for introduction in Parliament.
PERIOD OF CONSULTATION
7. The draft GST (Amendment) Bill 2009 together with the draft subsidiary legislation to effect the amendment to the GST Act for vouchers are available for public consultation from 3 Jun 2009 to 24 Jun 2009. Comments received after 24 Jun 2009 will not be considered as they will be too late for incorporation into the final Bill.
8. We encourage all interested participants to submit your comments via our online submission form. Using this online submission form is the easiest and quickest way for your comments to reach us for consideration.
You can also send us your comments, using the prescribed template, through:
a. email to email@example.com; or
b. fax to 6337 4134; or
c. post to: Ministry of Finance
100 High Street, #10-01
SUMMARY OF RESPONSE
9. We will publish on this website a summary of the main comments we receive together with our responses by August 2009. The summary will not disclose the identity of respondents, and will not separately address or acknowledge every comment received.
DOCUMENTS TO DOWNLOAD
10. For your convenience, the relevant documents relating to this public consultation exercise can be downloaded for further reference.