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Economy 101: Kiasu Noises from Singaporeans On Fuel Price

Noise RON95 RON97 Petrol Station Shell Fuel Singaporean

(It is a mystery when Singaporeans make noise on the price of RON95 fuel when it is still cheaper for them to buy the more expensive RON97 fuel. Image source: SVmongk, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Just read some of the unbelievable, kiasu loaded statements from our neighbours down south on the recent decision to ban “the heavily subsidised with MALAYSIAN tax-payers money” RON 95 petrol:-

Singaporean civil servant Tok Eng Seng, 38, said the frequent changes in the petrol ruling were confusing.

“We spend a lot of money here and we should be allowed to fill up with whichever type of petrol we want,” he added.

Ya, you may be spending a lot of money in Johor Bahru but you still win by getting a lot of things cheaper namely foodstuff and sundry items than buy the same items in Singapore. That does not mean we need to give you our hard-earned money too. In other words, just because there is a chance, you want a free screw too?

Another Singaporean, property agent Eric Tan, 43, said the lower price of fuel was the only attraction that led to many Singaporeans coming to the state.

“I believe sales of products in Johor Baru will go down once the ruling is enforced,” he said, adding that the move was bad for Malaysia’s tourism.

The sale of products and other groceries may go down if these kiasu morons decided to boycott the shops in Johor. It is their loss, not the businesses as they still have a large number of Malaysians for customers. But then, consumers will feel the pain whenever prices of goods and services go up but once everyone is used to the new price scale, sales should pick again.

The fact that the Singapore Dollar is still stronger than the Malaysian Ringgit and our Government is unlikely to increase prices of goods that drastically so soon (to ensure their own survival, of course); Singaporeans will still find items in Malaysia cheap enough to cross over the Causeway.

Art, photography and design executive Alex Soh, 37, also felt that many Singaporeans would not come to Johor if the price of petrol was increased.

“Cheaper petrol is one of the major attractions,” he added.

Well, Singaporeans have a choice, don’t they? They can always drive around to their nearest shopping malls in their own neighbourhood.

Further, they can always buy petrol at the petrol stations in Singapore and save us the big trouble. Other than cheap petrol, Malaysia has many other things that are attractive to foreigners – because I don’t recall “cheap petrol” in Tourism Board’s Visit Malaysia advertisements (if you get my drift).

Derrick Cheng, 53, said many Singaporeans were unclear about the issue.

“I heard people saying that the price of petrol would go up while others say that we (Singaporeans) can still buy the lower grade of petrol but are only allowed to purchase 20 litres,” he said.

“It is unfair to charge separate rates for foreigners because it doesn’t comply with the free trade system that is supposed to be practised by the Malaysian Government,” he added.

Another kiasu idiot who just did not get the underlining message!

There are separates rates because petrol in Malaysia is not sold at the actual market price (just be patient, we will get to that level eventually). Petrol in Malaysia is highly subsidised with Malaysian taxpayers’ money. It is not like Malaysians are paying for the petrol at the market price now and we decided to increase it above the market price for foreigners at our whims and fancy.

Salesman Ken Tan, 28, said there were traffic jams at the Causeway and because of that, many Singaporeans expected cheaper petrol when they return to their country.

Perhaps with fewer Singaporeans coming over to JB (as predicted by one Alex Soh), traffic may be less at the Causeway too.

If you ask me, I don’t see the problem – why should we, Malaysian taxpayers should be subsidising Singaporeans with cheaper petrol? It is not that we have banned the sale of petrol to foreigners – Singaporeans can still get petrol in Malaysia but at an un-subsidised rate.

Further, the price of RON97 in Malaysia is still cheaper than the same RON97 sold in Singapore – almost 57% cheaper! And I doubt that for that price difference, Singaporeans still want to go for RON95 unless you are dirt cheap.

So, what is the big problem here?

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