KUCHING, Dec 8 — The special committee that will be formed to stabilise the prices of goods in Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan will also holistically examine the cooperation with the state governments in addressing the issue, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah, Sarawak Affairs and Special Functions) Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali.
According to him, the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living (KPDN) will act as the secretariat of the special committee, which will be chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof and involves other ministries and representatives from Sarawak, Sabah and Labuan.
“If there are specific goods that the state governments wish to directly source from outside, the federal government will facilitate, including considering providing additional allocations,” he told reporters after a handover ceremony of vehicles to the Sarawak Malaysian Civil Defence Force here today.
Armizan, who is also the acting minister of domestic trade and cost of living, said the government has implemented two initiatives that focused on standardising the prices of goods in the Borneo region, namely the port-to-port price standardisation programme and the Essential Goods Distribution Programme through community drumming.
Meanwhile, he said logistics issues should not be used as an excuse to raise the prices of daily necessities and wet goods such as chicken in Sabah, Sarawak, and Labuan, because the states have poultry farms.
“There are also other issues such as the supply of poultry feed that we have to import...we need to look into (more ways) on how we can deal with this issue, especially those involving essential items,” he said.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, when launching the national-level 2023 Hawkers and Petty Traders Day (HPPK) in Penampang, Sabah, said he had asked Fadillah, who is also the Malaysia Agreement 1963 Implementation Action Council chairman, to set up a committee to address the issue of high prices of goods in Sabah and Sarawak.
The prime minister also gave an assurance that this matter would be resolved, including by providing subsidy allocations to reduce the prices of goods like chicken and rice, especially in Sabah. — Bernama