By Nigel Edgar
KUCHING, March 29: The Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) currently allows eateries nationwide to use subsidised household liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
Its Deputy Minister, Chong Chieng Jen, said the eateries include restaurants, coffee shops and food stalls. But the exemption does not apply to factories, hotels and other large-scale business entities, who are required to use commercial LPG.
“Enforcement would be put on hold until the economy stabilised. In this new Pakatan Harapan (PH) government, we are understanding and have taken note of the grouses by the businesses,” he told reporters at the state KPDNHEP headquarters here this afternoon.
Chong revealed that recently, KPDNHEP enforcement had issued letters to restaurants, coffee shops and food stalls requesting them to use unsubsidised commercial LPG as subsidised household ones were for household use only.
This, he acknowledged, had caused a great number of concerns and anxiety among the operators of these eateries, as this would increase their operating cost and prices of food.
“This will also increase the cost of living of the public, as well,” Chong added.
Chong revealed that the subsidised cost of LPG for household usage is RM1.90 per kg, not including delivery charges, while the cost of commercial LPG is at RM3.10 per kg.
“Last year, the federal government spent RM2.198 billion in subsidy for domestic or household LPG.
“As for commercial LPG, it is normally sold in 50kg cylinders or in 200kg bulk. But recently, some suppliers like BHP (only in the peninsula) and Petronas respectively produced the 12kg and 14kg commercial, purple-coloured LPG cylinders,” he said.
Chong pointed out that the price of commercial LPG fluctuates according to market price. — DayakDaily