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The biggest news around these parts (Singapore) seem to be that across the Causeway, you have to drive some 50km out to get petrol legally. The problem is that Singaporeans pay more than double the price of petrol in their lovely little, highly taxed, city-state (the Thais pay almost double).

Rather than limiting subsidies to Malaysian vehicles–or better yet, getting rid of it–the government took a broad swipe and ban the sale altogether to foreign-registered vehicles (if you’re wondering why this is limited to Malaya, Indonesia and Brunei, which borders, Sabah and Sarawak highly subsidizes fuel too).

Consider you’re a Singaporean driver taking a trip to Johore. You’re already required to have 3/4 of your tank full prior crossing the border – so you’re not exactly there to fill up the tank (customs at the Thai-Malaysian border could easily require that for Thai vehicles).

But what happen if you run out of petrol while in Johor? Sucks to be you.

While on the same note, I remember once Anwar Ibrahim, next in line for Prime Ministership it would seem, boasting about his ability to keep petrol prices low during the hey day of booming economy and low, global fuel prices. I don’t know about you, but I think that strikes against him even more so – he had an opportunity to dismantle the subsidy system with less immediate externalities, but instead, he deepened it.


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