DAP dismissed the government’s explanation on the diesel fuel hike, urging Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Hasan Malek for the “mysterious formula” behind the managed float system.
Hasan Malek had reasoned that the diesel price hike was due to a higher processing for diesel compared to RON 95 and RON 97 – which Kluang MP Liew Chin Tong says “he does not believe”.
“Show us the formula.”
“We don’t believe in this “dirty float”,” said Liew, asking that the government exercise transparency and reveal the way the new prices for fuel are achieved.
It was reported today that the reason the price of diesel went up while RON 95 and RON 97 had gone down was that the processing cost for diesel was higher. Hasan also said that the price increase was to offset previous subsidies imposed on diesel.
Liew believes that this amounted to tax, for previously spent subsidies on fuel.
Price of RON 95 should be much lower compared to RON 97
Seputeh MP echoed a similar concern derived from the small difference in price between RON 95 and RON 97.
“Why is there only a difference of 20 sen between the two petrol types if there is no sales tax imposed on RON 95?”
“Or has the past tax exemption been taken into consideration?”
Teresa Kok said that the government had on numerous occasions said that no sales tax was imposed on consumers for RON 95. However, the sales tax of 58 sen is imposed on RON 97.
“Is Hasan going to say that it is cheaper to produce RON 97, the premium grade?”
“So much cheaper that even with the imposition of 58 sen sales tax, it should only differ by 20 sen from the RON 95 price?” she questioned.
She also found it “shocking” that Hasan Malek’s explanation that 3 sen increase in diesel price was due to large amounts of subsidy given out by the government before.
“His answer was shocking to Malaysians who have thought that only market forces will determine the new prices under the new managed float system.”
She asked also if the managed float system was used as a tool to recoup past subsidies incurred by the government.
Weighing in on the doubt in the managed float system, Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli believes that that small drop in fuel prices was to ensure oil companies earn up to 30 sen for every litre of RON 95 petrol sold.
Added to that, he too, asked Putrajaya to make public the formulas and figures behind the managed float system that the government had imposed on fuel after the elimination of subsidies following the steady plunging of fuel prices.
Rafizi said that though Brent crude oil prices have reduced by 35.2 percent last week and the average price of crude oil in November 2014 dropped by 27.6 percent, consumer fuel prices here did not reflect the aforementioned global changes in price.
“Barisan Nasional only decreased the prices of RON95 by 1.7%, RON97 by 3.5%, and increased the price of diesel by 1%,” said Rafizi.
In their push for transparency, the PKR and DAP have urged the government to release all the details behind the calculations in the managed float system for fuel to enlighten the public on the unseen costs that result in the final fuel prices that consumers pay for. –The Rocket