KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia will start issuing tags for a new Vehicle Entry Permit (VEP) system next month, said the Transport Ministry.
The tags will be attached to foreign-registered vehicles entering the country via the Causeway and the Second Link, Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said yesterday.
The tags are undergoing application tests and should be ready for release in stages by the middle of next month.
"The Vehicle Entry Permit system will prevent foreign vehicles from being cloned and sold in the country," Mr Liow said in a press statement.
"It will also allow us to prevent vehicles with outstanding summonses from leaving the country."
Malaysia had announced in October last year that all foreign-registered vehicles entering Malaysia would soon require a VEP, on top of existing road charges.
Mr Liow had said that the VEP would cost RM25 (S$8.40) and be valid for five years.
The VEP scheme was originally set to start in January, but was delayed because, the authorities said, more time was needed to fine-tune the system.
The government wanted to ensure that "everything is in place" before introducing the VEP at both the northern border with Thailand and the southern one with Singapore, Mr Liow was quoted as saying by The Star newspaper in December last year.
There was no mention of a specific roll-out date in the latest press release, which said the ministry is currently in the process of introducing the VEP system in phases at Malaysia's border with Thailand, and at its borders with Indonesia and Brunei in the states of Sabah and Sarawak.
The VEP tag is fitted with radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology.
It will be integrated with a cashless payment system developed by Touch 'n Go, the operator that collects road charges.
Mr Liow had earlier said that the RFID tag could eventually be used to pay the road charge as well, as an alternative to the Touch 'n Go payment system.
In the statement issued yesterday, he said the introduction of the cashless payment system at the Causeway and the Second Link Expressway is in line with Malaysia's aspiration to be a cashless society, reported The Star.
A separate per-entry road charge of RM20 is currently imposed on vehicles entering Malaysia from Singapore.