Indian Muslim restaurants in Malaysia to defer price increase

KUALA LUMPUR - Indian Muslim restaurants in the country have agreed to defer a proposal to increase the prices of food and beverages sold on their premises.

In a statement, Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association (Presma) said all its members had agreed to defer the increase by between 5 per cent and 15 per cent after a meeting with Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Hasan Malek.

"Presma will study from time to time to get feedback from our members relating to the increase in costs of goods and services," it said.

Meanwhile, Public Accounts Committee chairman Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed said a lack of coordination between ministries had resulted in the need to form a special Cabinet committee to tackle the high cost of living, chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister himself.

Nevertheless, he welcomed the formation of the committee, saying it was timely.

"Although the Government cannot fully stop the price increase, it can put some sort of measures to control it from going further up."

On Wednesday, the Government announced a special Cabinet committee, representing various ministries, to carry out sectorial studies and to determine what constitutes a reasonable price increase.

MCA vice-president Datuk Chua Tee Yong also welcomed the formation of the committee, saying it was important to publish the outcome of the studies to help the people understand price hikes.

The public awareness would also help in the enforcement of the Anti-Profiteering Act, he added.

Bernama reported Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin as saying that the reduction in petrol subsidy was not the main factor in the price hike of goods.

After visiting the Kuala Lumpur wet market yesterday, he said other factors like demand, supply and weather, as well as the festive season were among the main factors influencing the increase or decrease of the price of an item in the market.