MPs question cost to develop fuel subsidy mechanism

MPs question cost to develop fuel subsidy mechanism


Members of the opposition have asked the government to provide a full explanation over the RM25.03 million that was apparently spent to develop mechanism for its new RON 95 petrol subsidy scheme.

Among them was MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong, who questioned the need to spend that much for the mechanism, The Star reports. He said the government already has a database for information about the targeted group and should not have paid to come up with such a mechanism.

“This is not something that is complicated. In the end, people are still angry and they are disappointed with the announcement,” he said. The Ayer Hitam MP added that the government should reveal the number of studies conducted, the purpose of the study and how much money was actually spent to come up with the mechanism.

The cost of development was also questioned by PAS deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, who said he was shocked by the amount. “Why is it so expensive to develop a scheme for RON 95 petrol. Who are the people behind it? How many individuals? I think the scheme as a whole also is not a concrete solution to help the poor,” he said.

Under the new petrol subsidy programme (PSP), which is slated to begin in January next year, eligible recipients in the B40 group will receive RM30 a month (for car owners) and RM12 a month (for motorcycle owners).

The government will reimburse the subsidy once every four months, and so car owners will receive RM120 and motorcycle owners will receive RM48 each time, with the amount being directly credited into the recipient’s registered bank account. The first payment for the scheme is scheduled for April 2020.

The targeted subsidy scheme – which is expected to benefit 2.9 million people – will only be given to car and motorcycle owners who are also recipients of the cost of living aid (BSH). The government also announced that the current price cap for RON 95 will be removed and the fuel floated once the PSP kicks off next year.

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