Malaysians have witnessed the frequent rise of petrol prices in recent years, with each increase digging deeper into our pockets. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like this increase will end anytime soon.
Chinese daily Sin Chew Jit Poh (星洲日报) cited Datuk Chua Tia Guan, an expert on the issue, who predicted that petrol and diesel prices will only head upward over the next 2 to 3 months. He explained that the 2 main culprits behind this are the increase of raw crude oil price and the ringgit’s weakening performance against the US dollar.
Chua, who is the head of tax and financial consulting at The Great Vision Advisory Group, said, “The government fixes the retail price for petrol and diesel with a managed float system based on the average monthly price of crude oil, and raw crude is priced in US dollars. Therefore I advise consumers to be prepared to face an even more challenging period over the next 2 or 3 months.”
Just days ago (31st January, Tuesday), it was reported that petrol and diesel prices have increased by 20 and 10 cents respectively. RON95 is currently priced at RM2.30 per litre (up 20 cents from RM2.10 per litre) and RON97 at RM2.60 per litre (up 20 cents from RM2.40 per litre). The price for diesel has also been adjusted to RM2.25 per litre (up 10 cents from RM2.15 per litre).
Following accusations and complaints that fuel prices were being increased without basis, Barisan Nasional’s strategic communications team explained that this was due to the unusually high amount of refineries around the world shutting down from fires and for major maintenance work. This reduced supply and increased the demand for petrol, thus the higher prices.