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Lower Petrol, Diesel Prices Likely On Dec 31: Ahmad Maslan

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KUALA LUMPUR – The government is expected to announce lower prices for RON95 and RON97 petrol as well as diesel on Dec 31 amid the slump in global oil prices, says Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan.

He expressed hope that traders would also reduce prices of daily essentials, which he said have not come down since retail prices for petrol were cut by several sen a litre early this month.

He said the government has identified 10 companies who between them control 80 per cent of the market for essential goods in the country.

“I hope the Domestic Trade, Consumerism and Cooperatives Ministry will hold discussions with the 10 companies rather than resort to taking disciplinary action against them under the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011.

“The problem is, while fuel prices have been reduced, manufacturers and traders still maintain their old prices or raise their prices, even as they are able to offer lower prices with their business costs having come down,” he said at the launch of Malaysia Debt Ventures Bhd’s new corporate strategy here today.

Meanwhile, Ahmad said as of yesterday, 224,813 companies have registered for the Goods and Services Tax, exceeding the year-end target of 150,000 firms generating a potential revenue of RM23 billion, adding the number of registrants is expected to grow continuously before the new tax regime is implemented in April 2015. – BERNAMA

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