Govt to continue monitoring oil prices, inflation rate

By LYDIA NATHAN / Pic By HUSSEIN SHAHARUDDIN

The government is monitoring the fuel prices and inflation rate before making the decision to provide any form of assistance to the people.

“We will be looking at the global fuel price closely. No decision has been made yet because for now, we are still alright.

“If the price rises so intensely that it causes inflation, we may need to consider helping the people,” Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani (picture) told reporters in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

In addition, he said that the aid will be dependent on global fuel prices.

Johari said the 1Malaysia People’s Aid will continue to be given to the bottom 40% household income group and middle-income household group categories.

The fuel prices have seen a consistent hike for the last five weeks.

This week saw a seven sen increase per litre for RON95 to RM2.38, a six sen increase for RON97 to RM2.66 and a five sen increase for diesel to RM2.25.

On the weekly fuel price mechanism, Johari said there are no plans to change it at the moment and the government has not decided to set a ceiling price for fuel.

“The government will not determine what level we are at, whether (the situation is) critical or not, as we do not want businesses to become uncertain,” he said.

Earlier, Johari witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Royal Malaysian Customs Department and the Inland Revenue Board for the purpose of information sharing with regard to compliance of tax payments.

Johari said the MoU will enable both parties to receive and give out information to each other easily for better efficiency.

“We want to harmonise the system, as well as reduce the cost of enforcement. This way, both parties can have information of businesses operating and we can become more efficient with our time,” he said.

Johari added that the Customs does not only work within the tax system, but is also responsible for the country’s border security and protection.