The price of essential goods in Malaysia is much cheaper than those in three other countries in South-East Asia, namely Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines, said Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin.
He said the latest survey conducted in the Philippines also revealed that the overall price of petrol, diesel and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in Malaysia was 60 percent lower than in the three countries.
Meanwhile, the price of raw materials such as chicken, fish, meat and dairy products in the country was between 33 percent and 19 percent cheaper, he added.
“This proves that when the government is chanting slogans to help the people, this (helping the people) is what has been done.
“So, the issue of the government does not know how to control prices of goods as raised by the opposition should not arise. Opposition leaders should go and check for themselves the prices of goods in other countries,” he told reporters at the ministry’s Consumerism and Management Sector Aidilfitri open house in Putrajaya today.
Hamzah said his recent visit to the Philippines was the third of its kind after visiting Thailand and Indonesia to survey the prices of goods in those countries.
He said the full report on the survey was presented to the cabinet today.
Meanwhile, Hamzah said a massive nationwide operation was underway to combat ‘scratch-and-win’ syndicates that had become rampant lately.
He said the operation, led by the Royal Malaysia Police, which had started last month was aimed at eradicating the syndicate right down to the roots, including the ringleader.
“This problem has been going on for years, but we think it is the police who have the expertise and can help us (the ministry) to arrest the syndicates’ ringleaders,” he said.
Hamzah was commenting on the latest tactic used by the scratch-and-win syndicates that were now in cahoots with employees of financial institutions to facilitate personal loan application of victims.