KUALA LUMPUR, June 12 (Bernama) — The Malaysian Rubber Products Manufacturers’ Association (MRPMA) has expressed its disappointment with Gas Malaysia Bhd in unilaterally increasing the natural gas price by 10.3 per cent to RM21.80 per one million British thermal unit (mmBTU) for non-power industrial gas users from July 1, 2015.
MRPMA President Datuk Dr Ong Eng Long said the increase was unfortunate as it came at a time when the economy is reeling from increasing cost of production and depressed world market.
“Members of the MRPMA have still not fully adjusted to the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax and now they have to face with escalating cost of production with the impending increase in the price of natural gas,” he said in a statement.
He said the association strongly felt that the increase in the price of natural gas was unjustified given that the price of natural gas, as indicated by New York Mercantile Exchange, has been on a declining trend.
“A natural course of action should see a corresponding decrease in the price of natural gas,” he noted.
The MRPMA urged the Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities and the Minister of International Trade and Industry to negotiate on behalf of the rubber products industry to halt the increase in the price of natural gas.
“Members of the MRPMA would agree to the increase in the price of natural gas if it was justified,” he added.
In addition, Ong said the association had always emphasised that any increase in the price of factors of production including natural gas should be gradual and ample time is given to the industry to adjust to the increase.
In view of this, the MRPMA rejected the increase in the price of natural gas by Gas Malaysia and would like the government to put a stop to the increase.