Friday, August 22, 2008


RM2.70 petrol price until Dec 31: Shahrir


The ceiling price of petrol will remain at RM2.70 a litre until year—end, Domestic Trade and Consulmer Affairs Minister Datuk Shahrir Abdul Samad said yesterday. He said the ceiling price would be reviewed after Dec 31 depending on the current global fuel price at yearend. “If the fuel price spirals (this year), the people need not worry about bearing the high cost as the Government will absorb the additional cost. “I cannot say now as our fuel price depends on the price of a barrel of oil in the world market which constantly fluctuates,” he told a media conference. Shahrir however did not discount the prospect of the oil price dwindling to below RM2 before Dec 31 given the current uncertainties in the global oil price. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said on Wednesday the Government will announce the new fuel prices on Aug 31 which will take effect on Sept 1. The new price would be based on the average fuel prices throughout the month of August and after deducting the 30 sen subsidy for a litre. On the possibility of a fare hike for public transport vehicles and an increase in the cost of transporting goods, Shahrir said it would not happen until year-end though there were calls from bus and lorry operators. He said the Government had other mechanism to help public transport operators who had to tide over with higher diesel prices. “We are aware when diesel price increases, it will take a toll on public transport and lorry operators. Nevertheless, they cannot raise fares to their whims,” he said. Shahrir also said the Government would re-visit in March next year the cash rebate paid to car and motorcycle owners. He said the form of rebate would be re-determined including the maximum amount that can be claimed by car and motorcycle owners. “What’s happening now is that individuals having five vehicles including those using 2000cc cars are given rebate, it’s not fair. “We give rebate to lighten vehicle owners’ burden but if they have more vehicles than they should, there is no need to give rebate anymore,” he added. Earlier, Shahrir launched two books on two Malaysian Prime Ministers entitled “Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi - A New Breeze In Malaysia’s Politics” and “Tun Abdul Razak - A Phenomenon In Malaysian Politics” authored by Dr Paridah Abdul Samad. Present at the launch were Abdullah’s wife Datin Seri Jeanne Abdullah and TunRazak’s wife Toh Puan Rahah Noah. - Bernama

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