The Finance Ministry (MOF) has tried to justify the Inland Revenue Board’s (IRB) rent for its Kuantan office, which reportedly runs up to RM680,000 a month, or RM8.16 million a year.
The Treasury neither confirmed nor denied the figure in a written parliamentary response to Fuziah Salleh (photo) (PKR-Kuantan) that is dated Nov 11.
It said the rent was at a rate set by the MOF’s Valuation and Property Services Department and based on the rental rates of offices in Kuantan town.
The MOF said the move to rent the office at Menara CDO, from where the IRB has been operating from since 2014, was because its old office in Kuantan Centre Point could not cope with the growing number of staff and customers at the IRB.
“As such, renting the Menara CDO is suitable because the building is 203,455.47 square feet, with 13 floors, and two underground parking spaces to house the Pahang (IRB) director’s office, Kuantan IRB branch and Kuantan IRB investigations branch.
“This building also provides space for 260 officers,” the ministry said.
It also said the rental covered furniture, equipment, fire insurance, maintenance, quit rent, property tax, security and others.
Menara CDO is owned by CDO Resources Sdn Bhd, a private firm.
When contacted, Fuziah questioned why the IRB was renting from a private company instead of a government-linked company or state-owned firm.
“Or why doesn’t the IRB acquire land from the Pahang state government and build an office?
“RM680,000 a month is a lot of money to pay,” she said.