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Malaysian official reassures metals traders about tax issue

[KUALA LUMPUR] The Malaysian government is considering two solutions regarding the impact of a new tax that the London Metal Exchange (LME) has said would have a negative impact on metals inventories in the country, a customs official said on Thursday.

"They (metals traders) don't have to panic. They won't be impacted. The GST (Goods and Services Tax) will be neutral to the businesses," Subromaniam Tholasy, director of the goods and services tax (GST) unit at Malaysia's Customs Department, told Reuters.

An announcement will be made next week after a meeting of all parties concerned, including the LME and the finance ministry, he said.

The LME said on Monday it might stop issuing warrants, legal documents for stored metal, for material in Malaysian warehouses from July if it does not get clarification from the government about the planned tax reforms.