SINGAPORE - The Ministry of Transport has expressed concern that Malaysia has targeted Singaporean motorists by planning to charge vehicles entering the state of Johor.
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said on Wednesday that his government had agreed to go ahead with a levy on non-Malaysian vehicles entering Johor, which is reported to be the only Malaysian state implementing such a fee.
It came after Singapore announced on July 1 that it would raise fees for foreign-registered vehicles entering the Republic.
A Transport Ministry spokesman said in a statement on Friday how that decision was "not discriminatory but serves to equalise the cost of owning and using foreign-registered vehicles on Singapore roads, with that for Singapore-registered vehicles".
He explained that Singapore-registered vehicles incur "significantly different costs" such as the Certificate of Entitlement (COE) and vehicle taxes. The spokesman added that the last time Singapore changed the entry fee was in 2004, when it was lowered.
The Transport Ministry added that it has contacted its counterparts in Malaysia asking for details of the entry fee. It is not yet known if it will be charged at all entry points into the state of Johor, or just from Singapore.
It was revealed, however, that Johor will receive a cut of the fees collected. The fee could range from RM20 ($7.80) to RM50 ($19.50). A final decision will be made later.
From August 1, the entry fee for foreign-registered cars entering Singapore will be raised from $20 to $35 per day. The fee for foreign-registered goods vehicles will be raised from $10 to $40 per calendar month.