KUCHING, June 27: Political secretary to the Chief Minister, Tan Kai, today urged Deputy Minister of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Chong Chieng Jen to disclose the names of the eight food and beverage (F&B) manufacturers who have been issued AP to import sugar into Sarawak.
“In the past, DAP always criticised the previous government on abusing (the system by giving) the import AP to cronies. So now, DAP should make known the list of companies who have obtained the AP publicly,” he said in a press statement today.
By allowing public access to the information, Tan reckoned it would demonstrate that the Democratic Action Party (DAP) was not abusing the import AP.
On June 7, Chong, who is also DAP Sarawak chairman, revealed that eight more F&B manufacturers in Sarawak had been given permits to import sugar, which could help them reduce their production costs by 10 to 20 per cent.
The sugar imported must be used only to process their products and cannot be re-sold to customers.
Tan said Chong should also let the public know about the eligibility and criteria to apply for the import AP as well as on the approval process.
“This will enable small F&B manufacturers and those interested to venture into the industry to benefit from this new policy introduced by the federal government so that they can obtain sugar cheaper and be more competitive,” he added.
Previously, F&B manufacturers in Sarawak were not allowed to import sugar and had to obtain their supply from peninsula-based MSM Malaysia Holdings Sdn Bhd and Central Sugars Refinery Sdn Bhd.
They had to pay between RM2.60 and RM2.70 per kg of sugar despite the lower international price of RM1.40 per kg for raw sugar and RM1.80 for refined sugar. — DayakDaily