There's No GST Now But 30% Of Mamak Eateries Have Raised Their Prices
The Goods and Services Tax (GST) has been zero-rated since 1 June, yet the prices of food and beverages at some mamak eateries have not gone down
Checks by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry (KPDNHEP) show that 30% of such eateries not only did not drop their prices after the implementation of 0% GST, but instead increased their prices.
According to its minister, Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, enforcement officers had made inspections at the premises in May and June to find out the differences of food prices before and after the implementation of the zero-rated GST.
"We found that the food prices at 30% of the mamak restaurants had been increased while another 70% had decreased.
"So, we are now actively identifying restaurants that are still stubborn and not lowering food prices," he was quoted as saying in a Bernama report on Thursday, 12 July.
The ministry also drew comparison between prices at mamak eateries and fast food restaurants
In another Bernama report, Saifuddin pointed out that prices of food and beverage were "significantly" lowered at fast food outlets.
"There are about 10,000 mamak restaurants and ministry officers found that there was a significant drop in prices at fast food outlets compared to prices at mamak restaurants."
Saifuddin added that KPDNHEP is mulling to disclose the report of the studies conducted by the ministry to enable the public to be aware of the prices on the market.
"We can perhaps create a link for the people to access directly and see for themselves the results of our survey," he said.
Saifuddin said that the necessary actions have been taken by enforcement officers against these restaurant operators
However, the minister stressed that it was more important to educate restaurant operators about the issue rather than imposing fine.
Sinar Harian reported Saifuddin as saying that enforcement will not be reflected in the collection of fines because the division places importance in educating the said parties.
"If it is done repeatedly, then only strict action will be taken because I believe that those working in the enforcement division are human beings, dealing with traders who are doing business for their livelihood. As long as there is no extreme violation, the preliminary action taken will be to advise," he was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, the Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Operators Association (PRESMA) is seeking to meet with KPDNHEP to resolve the issue of rising food prices in nasi kandar restaurants
"PRESMA does not know where KPDNHEP got the information that 30% of mamak eateries are said to have not lowered or increased food prices after the implementation of zero-rated GST.
"Since the implementation of the 0% GST, more than 4,000 restaurant operators under PRESMA have lowered food and beverage prices," PRESMA president, Ayoob Khan Muhamad Yakub said when contacted by Harian Metro on Thursday to comment on Saifuddin's statement.
According to Ayoob, a meeting will be held in the near future to discuss the matter with the ministry.
He also urged consumers who have been affected by the increased food prices to make an official complaint to the authorities so that action can be taken.
What do you think of the findings by the ministry about food prices at mamak eateries? Share with us in the comments section below.
Speaking of which, some popular smartphone models in Malaysia have gotten cheaper now that GST is zero-rated: