KUCHING, Dec 11: Sarawak and Sabah would be most willing to manage Petronas since the CEO of the oil giant declared that the oil and gas (O&G) business is not profitable.
This is the view of Santubong MP Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar who asserted that if the Bornean states should take over the management of Petronas, they would be willing to grant “five per cent gratis to the federal government”.
“Since the CEO of Petronas thinks that the margin of profits is not that good to pay Sarawak 20 per cent royalty as promised by the Pakatan Harapan leaders before the 14th General Election, then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad might consider giving Petronas to Sarawak and Sabah to manage, and perhaps Sarawak and Sabah might want to give 5 per cent gratis (wang ihsan) to the Federal government,” said Wan Junaidi.
Wan Junaidi was responding to statements made by Petronas CEO Tan Sri Wan Zulkiflee Wan Ariffin who said that increasing oil royalty to 20 per cent to O&G producing states was not possible.
Wan Zulkiflee further claimed that Petronas only made a profit margin of 3.7 per cent from oil production locally, after accounting for matters such as production costs, oil royalty and tax.
On another related issue where Dr Mahathir told Reuters that the federal government may sell stakes in Petronas to O&G producing states to fulfil PH’s 20 per cent oil royalty promise, Wan Junaidi objected to it, as he felt that the federal government would later use it against the two Bornean states’ fight for their rights under Malaysia Agreement 1963.
To Wan Junaidi, asking Sarawak and Sabah to buy the stakes in Petronas was like asking the owners to buy back their own properties. That was why he believed that the two Bornean states should apply for an injunction to stop the federal government from selling any stakes in Petronas.
“If the federal government proposes to sell Petronas shares to others, perhaps, Sarawak or Sabah might think of applying for an injunction to stop the federal government from doing so before the legal and other federal government obligations to the two states are properly addressed to the satisfaction of Sarawak and Sabah,” said Wan Junaidi.—DayakDaily