Johari: Govt may rationalise fiscal expenditure in Budget 2018

The government may rationalise fiscal expenditure in the upcoming Budget 2018 as it seeks to maintain an efficient and prudent fiscal management, according to Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani.

While Johari has reiterated that the government has no plans to increase taxes next year, he indicated that there is a need to rationalise certain government-related expenditure to ensure effective fiscal allocations.

“We are looking at rationalising some of our expenditures for next year, to make sure that every ringgit we spend to run the country, is effectively allocated.

“Our Prime Minister has confirmed that there will no rise in both corporate and personal income taxes next year, hence we need to allocate our financial resources where there are greater needs.

“The government remains committed in looking after the needs of Malaysians particularly those in the B40 (bottom 40% household income group) and M40 (middle 40%) income brackets,” he said.

However, he refused to divulge more details on the amount expected to be rationalised, pending the tabling of Budget 2018 on October 27.

When asked whether the government’s revenue is expected to increase next year, Johari said that it may depend on higher petroleum-related revenue moving forward.

“With regard to our anticipated total allocation in Budget 2018, it depends partly on the possibility of generating higher petroleum-related income by the government.

“For every US$1 increase in global crude oil price, the government’s revenue is expected to increase by an additional RM300mil. On top of that, the government will also receive higher other petroleum-related income such as oil royalty and petroleum income tax (Pita),” he said.