Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Gas and Durians

The "no free lunch" has finally caught up some - in the area of gasoline. The government's subsidy on gas has also benefitted our neighbours. At RM1.97/liter, some Singaporeans have been taking advantage of this cheaper gas and coming over to Johore Bahru to fill up their tanks while grocery-shopping over the weekend. With a currency exchange rate of about 2.25 to their advantage, the Singapore dollar covers a lot more mileage over here.

Today, the government announced that starting Friday, there would be no more petrol sale to foreign cars. Petrol stations located in border states like Johor and Perlis will be barred from selling petrol and diesel to foreign-registered cars starting Friday. This applies to petrol stations located as far as 50km from the border. The government is also studying if the ban should include petrol stations in Pontian.

Not only do our neighbours enjoy cheaper gas, Singaporeans also come to Malaysia for the food. One popular item is the durians. Each year, tons of durians are exported to Singapore.

For durian-lovers, you might have to pay more for the fruits this season as the rains during the supposedly dry season disrupted durian trees from flowering, thus bearing less fruits.

Durian orchard owners in Penang are lamenting about the poor harvest this season. In good times: The average durian tree can yield 50 to 70 fruits after flowering. This season, the yield is a lot less.

More... The Star..Bad weather a thorny issue for orchard owners


  1. Those poor poor Singaporeans! Now what are they going to do? Pity them lah! *tongue very much in cheek*
    I hope there will still be some durian left by the time I get home though..

  2. I don't see that many durians currently so they are probably waiting for you to come home before they rock and roll. So, when are you leaving on the jetplane, eh? Want me to do up some welcome banners and bunga mangga and round up some Ah Bengs and screaming Ah Lians? hehe..

  3. Why complain about Singaporeans shopping in JB? JB traders make a lot of money from them.

  4. KS, sound like complaining, meh?
    Of course not. It's good business for our JB folks, mah.

    But on the other hand, JB has become an expensive city with crime-rate being highest in the nation. Win some, lose some?

  5. Durians are rather cheap over here, coming from other places as well, so driving to JB would be for other 'makan', golf and some finer 'touch' of entertainment.

    It is the higher fuel costs, and not a shortage per se, that push up pump prices - so banning sales will not help much to maintain pump prices.. there's also the 3/4 tank rule for cars from this end.

    Nonetheless, the current recession, coupled with JB's high crime-rate, and other competitive holiday destinations will ease pressure on retail conditions there.

  6. hopefully its a win win situation on the petrol case. durians from east coast are more filling n delicious. is jb's crime rate that serious?

  7. i wonder how they are going to enforce this ruling? what is to stop the petrol stations from selling to foreign cars at pump prices? they may even profit from undercounter payments!!

    the govt should just increase the fuel prices bcos that's the price it should be sold - the subsidy mentality will just make the country poor.

    i say, everyone tighten their belts & get ready to pay more & spend less. did we not have an austerity drive in the mid 70s??

  8. PS. the govt can always lighten the burden by further reducing road-tax & income tax.

    yes, we definitely need to go on another austerity drive till things get better, if ever!!

  9. a few years ago... there was over production due to pro-longed dry season... guess this is how nature balance things up.