Govt Debunks Claim That Weekly Float Prices Will Cause Petrol Supply To Run Out By 1 Jan
A petrol dealers association president had warned that operators would refuse to refill their reserve tanks.
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng announced on Monday, 24 December, that fuel prices will revert back to a float system beginning 1 January
"The current automatic pricing mechanism (APM) will be replaced with a weekly review in the current trend of declining global oil prices, to allow users to enjoy quicker price reviews," Lim said, reported theSundaily.
"Hence, the retail price of petrol is expected to drop beginning Jan 1, 2019. And if the declining trend of prices continues, then fuel prices will be reduced each week."
Following the announcement, the Bumiputera Petrol Dealers Association of Malaysia (Bumipeda) president warned that fuel supply might run dry by New Year's Day if the government reverted back to the float system
In a rebuttal to Bumipeda, the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) has assured that fuel supply will not run out
KPDNHEP secretary-general Datuk Seri Jamil Salleh has since denied claims that consumers will face difficulty getting fuel, explaining that both petrol and diesel are classified as 'scheduled control items' under the Control of Supplies Act 1961, reported Malay Mail.
"Therefore, the government will ensure that the supply of scheduled goods is always on the market and easily accessible to consumers at all times," Jamil said in a statement released yesterday, 26 December.
Jamil also warned petrol station operators that they are obligated to comply with the terms of their license under the Control of Supply Regulations 1974, which ensures available and sufficient supply of fuel for daily sale
He added that the licensee is also not allowed to close the station, or to discontinue the sale of petrol and diesel fuel without permission, reported Malay Mail.
"The failure of the station operator to comply with any of the conditions is an offence under Regulation 21 of the Supply Control Regulations 1974 and punishable under Section 22 of the Control of Supplies Act 1974," Jamil reminded.
If convicted of the offence, licensees can be fined up to RM1 million, or three years' jail, or both for the first offence.
For the second offence, a fine of RM3 million, an imprisonment of up to five years, or both can be imposed.
KPDNHEP will be sending officers to monitor and inspect stations from time to time to ensure continuous supply of petrol and diesel for consumers