Malaysia is one of Asia's biggest employers of foreign labour. But recently, cases of deaths, abuse and forced labour have come to light. What is going on? Who is protecting these migrant workers?
KUALA LUMPUR: The increase in the price of diesel has a bigger impact on the economy than the price of petrol as it is diesel which powers industries, say industry players.
Petrol Dealers Association of Malaysia (PDAM) president Khairul Annuar Abdul Aziz said many people make a lot of noise every time the price of RON95 and RON97 petrol goes up but do not understand the repercussions from the change in the price of diesel.
“The focus should not just be on lowering fuel prices for the general public but for industries too,” he told FMT.
The price of diesel increased by 5 sen to RM2.20 per litre from March 1, while the price of RON95 and RON97 petrol remained unchanged at RM2.30 and RM2.60 per litre, respectively. Fuel prices have been based on a managed float system since Dec 1, 2014 following the government’s subsidy rationalisation efforts.
Khairul said that diesel is used by most long-haul vehicles. Such vehicles do not have the cheaper hybrid technology that is usually associated with petrol vehicles, he added.
He explained that diesel consumption in the country is divided into retail and commercial consumption. The former refers to diesel sold at petrol stations.
Commercial consumption involves heavier use of diesel by large-scale industries in sectors like construction, energy and plantation that buy diesel in bulk for their vehicles and machinery.
“They would buy diesel in skid tanks and have it delivered to their respective sites,” Khairul said.
Sarawak Lorries Transport Association chairman Jong Foh Jit said the monthly increase in diesel price over the past few months has been adding to the burden of lorry companies but it was up to each firm to decide on whether it wanted to raise its own fees to customers.
“Diesel fuel accounts for 20% to 30% of transport costs.
“As the price of spare parts and tires have also been going up, we hope that the government can provide some incentives like reduced road tax to lighten our burden,” he said.
A spokesman for The Lorry, a local company which is involved in the logistics business, said the company hadn’t seen any major impact following the increase in the price of diesel so far.
The Lorry acts as a platform to connect transporters with customers. Its co-founder Nadhir Ashafiq told FMT that their business model is based on a “willing buyer willing seller” basis.
“We set the prices for a moving job and it is up to our network of movers whether they want to take the job.”
Address: Wisma MTUC,10-5, Jalan USJ 9/5T, 47620 Subang Jaya,Selangor | Tel: 03-80242953 | Fax: 03-80243225 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org