KOTA KINABALU: Shell Malaysia shelves plan to close its petrol stations in Sabah.
The decision was made after an intervention from Putrajaya and a series of discussions with the state government, said Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor.
"The Sabah government welcomes the good news," said the Chief Minister in a statement here on Tuesday (Oct 3).
It was reported in June that the Shell stations would be closed in early January, including 10 in Tawau, two in Semporna, six in Lahad Datu and 12 in Sandakan.
Following Shell's announcement of the impending closure last June, Hajiji met with the chairman of Shell Malaysia, Siti Hurrairah Sulaiman, to discuss the matter.
Shell Timur Sdn Bhd, which operates Shell kiosks in Sabah and Labuan, had confirmed then that it was closing several less productive retail stations to sustain its performance in an ongoing review.
According to news reports, the move was mainly because of losses sustained over several years because of the automatic price mechanism (APM), which has not been reviewed since 1998.
It was reported that more than 500 people would lose their jobs if the closure takes place next year.
On Tuesday, Shell Timur Sdn Bhd announced it would not close its 40 retail stations in Sabah next January.
"Shell Timur would like to thank the governments of Sabah, Sarawak, and the Federal Government for their recognition of the challenges facing the industry.
"We are grateful for the support, and deeply appreciative of the government’s focus in ensuring the sustainability of businesses in Malaysia," it added.
Meanwhile, Sabah police received the first batch of high-powered motorcycles contributed by the state government on Tuesday.
Hajiji presented four of the eight motorcycles costing RM1.076mil to Sabah Police Commissioner Comm Datuk Jauteh Dikun at the Menara Kinabalu.
Also present was state secretary Datuk Seri Safar Untong.