Authorities to raid cooking oil manufacturers, packaging companies nationwide to tackle subsidy abuse

Ismail Sabri chairing the NACCOL meeting. Photo credit: Ismail Sabri Yaakob Facebook page

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KUCHING, July 4: The Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP), along with the police and the Malaysian Armed Forces, will be deployed to raid packaging factories until the national borders to ensure there is no misappropriation of polybag cooking oil in the country.

In announcing this measure today, Prime Minister Dato Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said that a comprehensive auditing and bleaching operation would be conducted nationwide involving 22 manufacturers and 305 cooking oil repackaging companies.

“This operation aims to obtain the actual amount of packaged cooking oil produced by these manufacturers and repackaging companies as well as the detailed information of the recipients of subsidised cooking oil.

“This measure is to ensure that the RM4 billion cooking oil subsidy allocated this year will reduce the burden of Keluarga Malaysia without leakages at every stage of the chain to reach consumers,” he said in a statement issued today.

This decision was made following the meeting of the National Cost of Living Action Council (NACCOL), which Ismail Sabri chaired in Putrajaya today, which saw five papers being presented by KPDNHEP, Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities (MPIC) and the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DOSM).

He also warned that strict action, including revoking quotas and licenses given to manufacturers and packers, will be taken to overcome leakages of subsidised cooking oil distribution.

“Current statistics showed that 60,000 metric tonnes of cooking oil in 1kg polybags distributed in a month are more than the household consumption in the country,” he explained.

He added that the government would continue to prioritise food security and manage the rising cost of living in the country.

“At the same time, the government will also intensify the Keluarga Malaysia Sales Programme that sells basic necessities at lower prices through strategic cooperation with members of Parliament (MPs), State elected representatives and local authorities, and will be expanded to institutions of higher learning throughout the country,” he said.

The Keluarga Malaysia Sales Programme, to be jointly led by KPDNHEP, MPIC, the Ministry of Entrepreneurs and Cooperatives and the Ministry of Federal Territories, will also implement a mobile concept.

“The government will introduce Keluarga Malaysia Menu at cooperative restaurants and cafeterias as well as food outlets in institutions of higher learning as an alternative to get breakfast, lunch and dinner at affordable prices,” he added. — DayakDaily