Kuala Lumpur – The price of RON95 petrol for the month of December is likely to be reduced by four sen, bringing the price to RM2.26 per litre from Monday.
Sources told the New Sunday Times that for the same period, RON97 is expected to cost RM2.46 after the government agreed to lower its price by nine sen.
The price of diesel, however, will see a three-sen increase from the current RM2.20 per litre.
Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Alias Ahmad said an official announcement on the increase would be made at 8pm today.
The current price of RON95 is RM2.30 per litre.
“The ministry will issue a notice on the new fuel prices to oil companies and petrol station dealers at 8pm tomorrow (today), and will take effect from 12.01am on Dec 1 (Monday),” said Alias.
“We have been monitoring the global fuel price for the month of November and there has been a downward trend. The price of Brent crude is now hovering around US$70 (RM236.77) per barrel.
“There should not be an increase in global oil prices, given that the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries had not indicated any reduction in exports,” he told the NST yesterday.
On Nov 21, its minister, Datuk Seri Hasan Malek, had said fuel subsidies for RON95 and diesel would be removed from Dec 1 following the implementation of a managed float system, similar to that used on RON97.
Under the system, the monthly average of the world crude oil price would determine the retail fuel prices of the following month.
Alias said in the event of an increase in fuel prices, 1,900 ministry enforcement officials had been tasked with ensuring traders did not hike up the prices of goods, especially of essential items.
This, he said, would be carried out under the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011.
“Traders usually take advantage of any hike in fuel prices. By right, they should reduce the price of goods if fuel prices decrease, but the cost of an item depends on many factors that we will have to study.
“The ministry will issue a notice to traders who have increased their prices and require them to reply to us within 14 days to justify the hike,” said Alias.
“If they fail to do so, offenders can be brought to court and fined up to RM100,000 or imprisoned for not more than three years, or both.
“Companies can be fined up to RM250,000 for the first offence and up to RM500,000 for subsequent offences.”
Federation of Malaysian Consumer Associations vice-president Mohd Yusof Abdul Rahman said traders should reduce the price of items following a reduction in fuel prices.
“If the fuel price decreases, we expect it to benefit the people, similar to how a cut in fuel subsidies had led to an increase in prices.
“One of the reasons for a price hike is the transportation
cost. Hence, if the transportation cost is reduced, prices should go down.
“For example, the price of express bus tickets should also be reduced when there is a drop in oil prices, as the sector is directly
affected by it,” Yusof said, adding that he hoped the government would put in place stringent
measures to monitor market prices.
Yusof said money saved from the removal of subsidies could be used to upgrade the public transport system. – NST