The government has implemented a subsidy rationalisation plan for cooking oil effective today, 1 November
Efforts to restructure the Cooking Oil Stabilisation Scheme (COSS) will see the government removing the cooking oil subsidy in stages.
This means Malaysians are seeing the price of the key cooking ingredient go up for the first time in 10 years.
It was reported that the cabinet has agreed that Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry (KPDNKK) will take over from Plantation Industries and Commodities Ministry (MPIC) on the management of the scheme which begins today.
If you're looking to get cooking oil but don't wish to fork out extra money, here's what you can do: Buy the 1kg cooking oil in polybag pack
The government has promised to continue subsidising the 1kg polybag, which will be sold at a maintained price of RM2.50 for the months of November and December 2016.
Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin reportedly said that the government has retained the subsidy on the 1kg polybag package to cater to the needs of the low-income groups, adding that subsidies provided by government should reach the actual targeted group.
"In ensuring there will be no leakages, I have instructed the enforcement team to conduct daily monitoring on business premises," he was quoted as saying by The Sun.
"Those who find it hard to buy the polybag package and wanted to buy in bottles are welcomed to do so, but they have to pay the market price," he said.
Is there a difference in quality?
The Star quoted the Malaysian Edible Oil Manufacturers Association's (Meoma) executive secretary Andy Lee as saying that cooking oil in 1kg polybags is of the same quality as those in plastic bottles and marketed as blended cooking oil.
Lee had previously said that the association has yet to decide whether a production quota would be set for the 1kg polybag of cooking oil, which is still under subsidy.
The English daily also quoted a source with direct knowledge of the industry saying that under the current (outgoing) system, each manufacturer was allocated a certain quota of refined cooking oil. These manufacturers are said to have the freedom to decide for themselves in what quantities they want to pack their products in.
Aside from the 1kg polybag, all other subsidies has been removed for the other packages
Under the subsidy rationalisation exercise, all cooking oil (except the 1kg polybag) is to be priced according to market rate.
This would include packages such as the 500g, 1kg, 2kg, and 3kg bottles, which will no longer be subsidised by the government.
KPDNKK Minister Hamzah said that the rationalisation exercise was necessary to ensure that the government does not need to fork out an additional RM200 million to continue subsidising cooking oil for the next two months.
Share and let your family and friends know that they can still get cooking oil at a subsidised price, at least for the next two months!