Interview with Anand Chelliah, Baker Tilly Tax Expert (Apr 4th 2019, Nan Yang Siang Pau )

Title: Should donations from local or foreign sources be taxed? Experts say that the Malaysia Income Tax Act 1967 is not specific

 Baker Tilly Malaysia’s Managing Partner of the Tax Department, Anand Chelliah, said that donations from local or foreign sources need to be approved by the Inland Revenue Board of Malaysia to ensure that they are used for the purposes of charity, education, welfare, and etc – otherwise there would be no tax exemption available.

He said that there must also be proof that income received from abroad were earned due to actual work done, failing so would mean that the amount is taxable.

Anand stressed on the importance of transparency in helping to improve trust between the government and taxpayers. Once taxpayers begin to lose faith in the integrity of the tax system, major issues would occur.

He points out that the government does not share sufficient information about various tax matters to taxpayers. He refers to Australia and other countries as examples where the government has good transparency standards in reporting exact details of how taxes are used.