And it is also in the news. Kudos to theSun for continuing giving coverage to the Opposition:
Budget 2008 ala DAP
KUALA LUMPUR (Sept 5, 2007): The DAP today unveiled its version of Budget 2008, its first ever. Prime Minister cum Finance Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is scheduled to table Budget 2008 on Friday (Sept 7).
Tagging its fiscal policy document as "Malaysian First 2008 Budget", DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said the budget focuses on the twin challenges of globalisation and the country's high dependence on oil and gas resources.
The 52-page document seeks to establish a holistic approach covering education, social welfare and aid, battling crime, energy conservation sustainable development with the environment, affordable and available access for internet broadband, fair wage for workers, efficient tax structure, research and development, improving competitiveness and establishing value-added industries that face up to the challenges of globalisation.
Lim said in a press conference in Parliament house that the budget is also to signal DAP's policy-making contribution towards nation building in occasion of the 50th Merdeka anniversary.
Some of the proposed fiscal measures are:
Legislating the use of oil and gas revenue to ensure a substantial portion of the revenue is spent on education as well as research and development;
To build 250 new schools, including 60 Chinese schools and 15 for Tamil schools;
Improve public transportation system, with attention given on Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Johor, as well as developing a 'Valley Circle' rail network to by-pass the federal capital's congestion;
Review toll concession agreements, and if within six months no headway, then the government is to acquire the assets of these entities;
To give Malaysian MSC status companies preference in tendering for government IT-related contracts and nurture them into regional players;
To Introduce a fair wage policy to improve the earning capacity of low-income earners above the age of 35, a Malaysia Bonus of RM1,200 for those earning less than RM3,000 and give those over 60 years old a Senior Malaysia Bonus of RM1, 000;
To tender all government contracts in an open, competitive and transparent manner;
To reduce SME's first chargeable income of RM500, 000 to 18%, down from the current 20% and introduce a new partial tax exemption threshold be set at RM200, 000 and taxed at 12%;
To reduce by 1% the top tax bracket to 27%, and revise and simplify the progressive tax brackets;
Impose a Green Tax by 2010 whereby a 'carbon tax' is charged at RM25 per tonne of CO2 equivalent, with the exception of methane emissions from agriculture sector and those who adopt best global practices on emissions;
To create a new source of revenue, Approved Permit be auctioned off to the highest bidder;
Increase maternity leave from the current 60 to 90 days, provided they have worked for 180 days with the employer; and
To involve civil society in tackling issues by making available grants to Non-Governmental Organisations promoting education and manage various social causes and programmes.
Lim said the DAP will forward its budget proposals to the Prime Minister's Office tomorrow in Putrajaya.
Also, from Malaysiakini.
And some (supposedly) perks for you bloggers out there:
In the larger national interest of achieving the above targets, and its importance towards building a generation of enterprising and innovative Malaysians, DAP proposes that the broadband market be liberalised to allow for foreign competition.
146. To promote the building of high quality and reliable broadband network, DAP proposes favourable tax treatment for telecommunication firms undertaking broadband investments:
New broadband operators are allowed to deduct financing costs from their taxable income.
Investors are exempted from paying taxes on interest income from bonds specifically ear-marked to finance these investments.
Exemption from import duties for specific state of the art telecommunications equipment required for broadband infrastructures.
Bye-bye TMNut Screamyx monopoly crony?
Kudos to Tony and gang!