No decision to float price

  • Nation
  • Friday, 20 Feb 2009

JOHOR BARU: The Government has not decided whether to float the price of premium grade petrol RON97 based on international oil prices.

Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad said that various elements must be taken into consideration before a pricing strategy was to be set.

“These include the price of the product, industry margins and government duty,” he said in an interview yesterday.

Commenting on a media report which stated that the price of RON97 would be floated in July, Shahrir said:

“It is premature for them to say that. It is a story from a dealer who may not understand what is being said.”

He said the Government was working out a pricing and communications strategy to encourage the use of RON95.

“One way is for RON95 to have more subsidies and RON97 to have less.

“The issue is to price it right so that people will use RON95 more than RON97,” he said, adding that consumers must understand that RON95 was sufficient for all cars, including those of European and Japanese make.

Shahrir also said that the Government had no plans to reduce the current price of petrol although the price of crude oil had dropped to below US$35 per barrel.

Meanwhile, Federation of Malaysian Con–sumers Association (Fomca) president Datuk N. Marimuthu said consumers would be the “ultimate winners” if the Government decided to float the price of RON97.

He said that with the downward spiral of global fuel prices, consumers would enjoy greater savings through the price floating mechanism.

Marimuthu, a member of the economic council, said that consumers could rest easy even if the price of petrol skyrocketed suddenly as the Government would intervene to cap prices.

“If there are repercussions that really affect the consumers, the Government will provide assistance. Either way, consumers will benefit,” he said.

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