JOHOR BARU • Malaysia's Transport Ministry has called on its Singapore counterpart to reconsider its decision to match Malaysia's road charge (RC) of RM20 (S$6.40) for foreign-registered vehicles entering the country from the Republic.
Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said Malaysia's RC was not discriminatory against Singapore-registered vehicles, pointing out that the Republic had been charging Malaysian cars road charge for the past 44 years. "Singapore has been charging us since its Vehicle Entry Permit (VEP) introduction in 1973, starting with $10 and gradually increasing this to $35 currently.
"It is only now that we have introduced the RC of only RM20, which is in line with our efforts to implement the Vehicle Entry Permit," he said last Friday.
He added that there would not be any additional charge on foreign vehicles besides the RC when the VEP is fully implemented by the middle of the year.
The collection of the RC at the two land entry points in Johor - the Causeway and the Second Link in Tuas - took effect last November.
On Jan 9, Singapore's Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan told Parliament that Singapore intends to match the road charge and will announce the details of this move soon.
Malaysia, he said, collected about RM13.93 million in road charges from Singapore vehicles in the seven weeks from Nov 1 last year, when the road charge was introduced.
Mr Liow said owners of foreign-registered vehicles would have to pay a registration fee of RM10.
"And we will also issue radio-frequency identification tags," he said, adding that the VEP, including the RC, would be gradually implemented at all entry points along the border with Thailand, Brunei and Indonesia. "We have good ties with the Singapore Government. So, I hope that they will reconsider," he said.
THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK