Yoursay: Would imposing wealth tax lead to the rich emigrating?


Modified 21 Nov 2018, 12:01 am

YOURSAY | ‘Not implementing wealth, inheritance, or capital gains tax on mega rich is weak and a self-serving policy.’

'Wealth tax, capital gains tax may cause more damage than benefit'

Pisang Goreng: This is a classic argument used by politicians around the world: if we tax our rich buddies, they will get scared and leave.

A study by Cornell University sociologist Cristobal Young showed that in reality (both in the US and globally) this is not true.

Millionaires are typically older, and in the late stages of their careers; they are socially and economically tied to their location. They have no need to uproot families and homes to places with better job opportunities and incomes - they are already rich.

Not implementing wealth, inheritance, or capital gains tax on the mega rich is weak and a self-serving policy. Corporate tax is a different matter, subject to other considerations.

Prudent: @Pisang Goreng, those are the old millionaires with ‘old’ money. The new millionaires, multimillionaires, billionaires and multibillionaires are mobile and/or young.

They are even more mobile than your smartphone. And they can move their wealth with a few clicks of the button, and themselves with their families just as fast. Welcome to the ‘new’ wealth of the digital economy!

The inheritance tax is just put on hold at the moment. It could come later when the economy is more stable and the government really needs to tax the rich in order to lower overall taxation for all taxpayers.

CKL: The finance minister is finally saying something sensible. Those taxes would be net negative.

The government should try hard to get the people to invest locally and tax the profit from such endeavours. New businesses generate employment, and more taxes.

If you tax the rich, they will spend more time trying to avoid (not evade) taxes rather than trying to expand businesses. So the economy will stagnate rather than expand. Money will leak out and benefit other countries.

It is amazing that MPs do not understand such simple economics. Don't try to kill the goose that lays the golden egg.

Repealing the goods and services tax (GST) was a very bad policy move. Don't make more mistakes.

Anonymous: As businesspeople understand, the vast majority of the voters are salaried, so politicians will implement policies favouring this group.

Businesspeople are the ones who will invest and create wealth for everyone, more so for themselves and their families. So if an inheritance tax is imposed, they will move their accumulated wealth out of the country.

If businesses are taxed too heavily, it lessens the incentive to invest. Eventually it's the country’s loss. Jobs will also be less. If small and medium enterprises are pressured too much, they will just close shop.

GMOD: If you plug all the leaks, reduce cronyism/corruption, competitively tender all large contracts, cut out unnecessary middlemen who add zero value, have full compliance or enforcement on fines and taxation (including donations?), investigate all instances of unexplained wealth et cetera, then Malaysia will have more than enough money without having to resort to punitive and potentially damaging new taxes.

Oh, and everything should be evaluated on merit to improve the efficiency. It’s not difficult.

Quigonbond: Inheritance tax is a bad idea simply because a jobless dude inheriting his parent’s house that has hyperinflated value won’t have money to pay the tax.

It’s a harbinger to the nationalisation of highly personal assets, that’s why any British government that proposed this tax has been pushed out of office.

Anonymous_2679c6e5: A tax is what it is to the people. Taxing and burdensome. Taxpayers do not mind sharing the responsibility of nation-building but the tax systems should encourage business, revenue generation and wealth creation.

It should be just and fair, and not become punitive for entrepreneurship and self-dependency.

Inheritance tax is punishing the next generation for what their forefathers have built through thrift, sacrifice and hard work.

Capital gains tax punishes the retired and other stakeholders for initiative at self-sustenance and contributing to the growth of the capital markets.

Wealth tax punishes the hardworking entrepreneur and feeds the subsidy mentality of the uninitiated and lazy.

The right approach should be tax as a business-friendly, people-friendly tool to create a sense of ownership and shared responsibility for nation-building by the poor and the rich alike and everyone else in between.

One cannot believe for one moment that the National Education Loan Fund (PTPTN) defaulters cannot repay a minimum 2% of their loans while burning hundreds of ringgit in cigarettes.

Just take a look at how much money of our young are going up in smoke despite whatever additional 'sin' taxes. And these are among the people who want to tax the rich.

Look at the outflow of foreign exchange remittance by foreign workers that can be saved when we have a large pool of underworked civil servants available that are straining the operating budget and the expense of developmental budget.

Look at all the government's grandiose plans to build unjustified and unnecessary projects but no plans to maintain because somebody wants a cut on the project.

If the current government plugs all these loopholes, there is no need to talk about all these other new taxes.

People making money and enjoying the fruits of what this nation can offer do not mind playing their part to share the cost of nation-building provided it is done fairly, equitably and not shackled by what is in the word, 'ketuanan' and entitlement mentality.

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