Malaysian cabotage debate continues

Kuala Lumpur: The debate over Malaysia’s cabotage policy continues to divide opinion.

Last week Sabah United Chinese Chamber of Commerce (SUCCC) president Datuk Seri Gan Sau Wah called for cabotage to be scrapped.

Now, however, Sabah Bumiputera Chamber of Commerce (SBCC) Honorary Treasurer Datuk Roselan Johar Mohamed has waded into the debate, suggesting the abolishment of the cabotage policy as a solution to address the disparity in prices of goods between Peninsular Malaysia and Sabah and Sarawak might do more harm than good to the country’s shipping industry.

“There has never been a sovereign country who has allowed foreigners to ply their domestic waters,” Roselan Johar told local newswire Bernama here yesterday.

“We in SBCC have accepted in principle that the main reason for the price disparity is due to the one-way traffic currently experienced in the shipping trade, in which the inbound freight is bound to be higher than the outbound freight,” he said.

In addressing the trade imbalance, Roselan Johar said Sabah’s vast arable land could be utilised for corn plantation to reduce importing 15,000 metric tonnes of corn monthly from overseas, which cost RM200m annually.  [03/07/14]

Calls to scrap Sabah cabotage policy

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