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WP’s Louis Chua Likens GST Hike To Football Team Losing 5-0 & Then Scoring Own Goal

Louis Chua & WP Do Not Support GST Hike Due To Rising Inflation

In a Parliament speech on Monday (7 Nov), Sengkang GRC MP Louis Chua Workers’ Party raised objections to raising the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rate to 8% in 2023 and 9% in 2024.

Pointing out that inflation rates are likely to remain high, Mr Chua likened the GST hike to conceding an own goal while being down 5-0 as a football team.

Source: MCI on YouTube

Here’s the lowdown on what Mr Chua said in his speech.

Louis Chua disagrees with GST hike in 2023 & 2024

Mr Chua expressed his disappointment that the Government has decided to push through with the GST hike. He maintained WP’s stance that the GST hike isn’t necessary.

However, he recognised that the two support packages DPM Lawrence Wong had announced so far as “the right thing to do” given Singapore’s fiscal position.

“I recognise that the previously announced Assurance Package was supposed to offset about five years’ worth of additional GST for most households,” he said.

(But) with the effect of inflation coming in hard, this five years’ worth of offset is looking to be increasingly diminished.

Mr Chua also said the support packages are merely transient, while the hikes will be permanent. He said this would be “the straw that breaks the camel’s back” for Singaporeans already struggling with the cost of living.

“Do we really want to fan the flames of inflation, and contribute an additional unnecessary one percentage point increase in the cost of living? Are we contributing to inflationary pressures?” he asked.

Mr Chua then came in with a football analogy, despite professing that he isn’t much of a football person:

I am not much of a football person, but when your team is fivenil down, does it make sense to respond by scoring an own goal?

No Covid-19 when hikes were proposed in 2019

“When the decision to raise the GST to 9% was mooted in 2019, circumstances couldn’t be more different. There was no Covid. Commodity prices are half of what they are today. Inflation rates are a tenth of what they are today,” Mr Chua continued.

Now that soaring inflation is affecting Singaporeans and that viable alternatives haven’t been given due consideration, he said the WP cannot support the bill.

Earlier, Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong said the Assurance Package would be boosted by another S$1.4 billion to help Singaporean households cope with the GST hike.

Assurance Package Increases To S$8B, Will Help S’porean Households Offset GST Hike

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Featured image adapted from MCI on YouTube.

Jonathan Yee

Jonathan is a bedroom headbanger. His Kobo is never far from him.

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