PUTRAJAYA: Hotels and restaurants that impose service charge must display notices informing customers of the fee from May 1 or risk a fine of up to RM100,000.
The notices must be displayed at the entrance or any spot that is visible to potential customers, said Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Alias Ahmad.
According to the order, the notice must display the expression “all prices or charges are subject to __% service charge” in capital letters with the height of the lettering measuring no less than 5cm.
“The notice must be in Bahasa Malaysia or in Bahasa Malaysia followed by a translation of the expression in any other language,” he told a press conference yesterday.
Alias said the order was in accordance with Section 10 of the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act.
“The order comes into operation on May 1, 2015.
“Any business owner who does not comply with this order is committing an offence and can be fined up to RM100,000,” he warned.
The order was gazetted on Thursday.
This followed a decision announced by Alias on Wednesday in which the Government allows businesses to implement the service charge, amidst plans to scrap the controversial fee.
Alias also said the ministry would be shifting the focus of Ops Catut – meant to crack down on Goods and Services Tax (GST)-related offences – to businesses in rural areas as well as manufacturers.
“After over 20 days since the GST has been implemented, we have conducted 152,129 checks under Ops Catut and opened 30 cases,” he said.
“From now on, we will be shifting our focus to small businesses in rural areas such as small towns, villages and Felda settlements.
“We have received many complaints that our ministry is not doing enough checks but the fact is, we have conducted over 150,000 so far.
“We will also be conducting checks on manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors,” said Alias.
He said the ministry would also set up mobile complaints centres in makeshift vans, which would be stationed near supermarkets and hawker bazaars.
“Customers can lodge complaints at these mobile centres and the officers can even launch investigations immediately,” said Alias.