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Microsoft, ISV consortium announces cloud-based GST help for Malaysian SMEs

AvantiKumar | Dec. 12, 2014
As announced in Budget 2015 by the Malaysian PM, the new GST will come into force in Malaysia from 1 April 2015.

Dato' Hafsah Hashim - CEO, SME Corporation

Photo - Dato' Hafsah Hashim - CEO, SME Corporation

Microsoft and local independent software vendors [ISVs] have rallied to help Malaysian businesses prepare for the new the new GST [Goods and Services Tax], which will come into force in Malaysia from 1 April 2015, as tabled in Budget 2015 proposals by the Malaysian prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak earlier this year.

While the ICT industry has reacted positively to the replacement of the existing sales and services tax [SST] model by GST, many companies especially in the small and medium [SME] sector are reportedly caught in a last-minute scramble to become GST-compliant, said Dato' Hafsah Hashim, chief executive officer of national agency SME Corp. Malaysia.

"For the 160,000 SMEs expected to register for GST by April next year, we recognise that the implementation of a new system may pose challenges for them to achieve GST-readiness and compliance. We have been working together with the RMCD in undertaking training and awareness seminars throughout the country," said Hafsah.

"SME Corp. Malaysia has also been providing assistance to SMEs via automatic issuance of e-Vouchers worth RM1,000 [US$287] based on list of GST registered companies, which we received from the RMCD [Royal Malaysian Customs Department]," she said. "SMEs can use the e-Vouchers to either purchase new accounting software or upgrade to GST-compliant system from vendors appointed by RMCD. Additionally, we also welcome Microsoft's initiatives in supporting SMEs on their path towards GST system implementation, especially in providing technology and training support through their ISV partners."

Hafsah said that GST compliance was not solely a software technology implementation. Besides the necessary registration with the RMCD, the two main steps are:
1. The identification of business processes changes necessary according to the Royal Malaysian Customs Department guidance; and
2. Implementing those business processes changes to the business applications. Some enterprises may need to upgrade or change their business application to ensure a successful implementation.

Affordable cloud driven solutions

Azizah Ali, Microsoft Malaysia's general manager for small and midmarket solutions and partners {SMS&P), said that Microsoft together with local partners Sage Software Wavelet Solutions and Rofarez Solutions are making available GST-ready solutions to help local SMEs to compliance.

The solutions include Microsoft Azure and Office 365 as part of a suite of customisable, scalable software that is easily integrated into existing financial and accounting solutions in use by SMEs, said Azizah.


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