Nationalise the Malaysian highways

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So the government has put off the highway toll hike to the end of the year.

But before you rejoice, think about this: the government will have to pay RM287m in compensation to the concessionaires:

  • Plus – RM195m
  • Sprint – RM36m
  • Akleh – RM27m
  • Besraya – RM9m
  • NPE – RM20m

That’s our money going straight into the concessionaires’ pockets. Easy money for doing nothing.

By the way, Plus Expressways Berhad made a profit before tax of RM1.5 billion for the year ended 31 December 2008 – up from RM1.3 billion the previous year.

Last year, the government paid RM245mil to Plus, Akleh and Sprint as compensation for a scheduled increase from January 2008 year that never took place.

The BN appears afraid of the impact of these toll hikes on the coming by-elections. They have also learnt their lesson after the sharp petrol price hike cost them dearly on 8 March 2008.

The BN is trying to pull a fast one. Either way – toll hike or no hike – we end up paying. It’s just that the compensation is less obvious as it comes out of public funds that the BN government controls.

As it is, the concessionaires are profiting from ever-increasing traffic volumes.

Who drew up these lop-sided agreements that favoured the concessionaires in the first place?

It’s time to nationalise the hightways – the whole lot of them – once and for all. If the highways are nationalised, then the entire profits can be used for improving public transport and other development projects for the poor.

It’s not as far-fetched as it might seem. As it is, the government owns 64 per cent of Plus via Khazanah/UEM.  Another 10 per cent is held by the EPF and 7 per cent by government-run unit trust and pension funds.

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Peter

Pak lah said, defer the hike!
Yes, aftger the by elections, go ahead the the hike!!
Don’t buy their stories!!!

speedo

Khazanah and I dont know about UEM, but i heard its doing really bad now and loses in profit, i think its good or is that bad? where is all the peoples tax money go then? toll collections money too…where its all gone if Khazanah making loses.

smith

I don’t think it is a question of what can be done, but what SHOULD HAVE BEEN DONE. And all these years have proven that the present govt has no intention of fixing this ever, why should they?

THe rakyat should have awaken by now and know what to do.

aca

tan, tanjong bungah

why dont you go and ask Hishahmudin’s family?

aca

toyol nephew,

there are other ways like striking a jackpot.

put your ear on the ground. its abuss on who funded the Perak coup. word is …. for disabled lady

…. expect a gaming tycoon to reap the fruits down the road.

gee, if assembly dissolves next month (Mar), she will be poorer by … Guess …. is enough to set up for the rest of her life.

104East

Wah Lao. Can I have a contract like that too. Income guarenteed by the gomen. If you ppl in Malaya think this is unfair, it is worst for us in the east. The majority of us never set foot on the Malayan highways yet our taxes are used to pay these concessionaires. Damn.

Drachen

Dr M: “What you have is a cabinet which is not very knowledgeable all the time because it is not made up of experts but politicians (and) some politicians like myself can sometimes be stupid. The cabinet merely gave approvals in principle and never really studied the implications in some parts of the agreements.” (The Sun, 9 Jan 07)

Stupid when it comes to money?

Gadfly

The toll booths have 2 functions: one is,by contract, to collect toll and the other,by default, is to help to collect votes for a Pakatan Rakyat government before general or by-elections.

ABM

UEM/Khazanah owns PLUS; and PLUS provides more than 70% of the profits of UEM; and UEM isan UMNO owned company….and we expect this Govt to act in the interest of the country and Rakyat?! Come on; why would they slay the Golden Goose?
Somebody said here “only way to renegotiate all these piratization (no mispelling) contracts is to first boot out the Bad News BN and UMNO!
People…we have some 20 months to work on all our fellow citizens to get our country back…!

de minimis

That’s what I’ve been advocating in my blog for some time now. Soem are sensitive to the label of “nationalise”. But we know that it means having the government take over the toll roads and paying a reasonable price for them via the issuance of bonds i.e. Malaysian Govt Securities. The toll collections continue for a few more years (under govt) until the acquisition cost is fully repaid.

fisher

in the corporate world, one talks of corporate responsibility, and it is especially more relevant in public listed entities. for plus to even consider raising toll charges in light of current economic conditions is sheer irresponsibility, and when they are making obscene profits, it borders on the criminal. in the corporate world, contracts can be re negotiated when conditions do warrant due to changes to the original framework upon which the contract was first entered into. every responsible and conscientious employee is expected to do so. however, we have the people, who are supposed to look after the rakyat’s welfare,… Read more »

Moonrider

No matter what is the decision is our money. Those moron do whatever they like and as long the money in their pocket who cares ..

I am …. off with this act. Those who voted for them .. congratulation .. ur effort has make the others malatysian suffer and those cronies happily sucking your money.

Ex Neutral

It’s simply like HIGHWAY ROBBERY.

Fair

Excerpt: Who drew up these lop-sided agreements that favoured the concessionaires in the first place? —————————————– I hold Mahathir to be the one who must be answerable to all the “piratisation” projects/concession as he was the PM then. He practically screwed all Malaysians (except the cronies) for many generations with all these lopsided agreements. Don’t even think that the kampong folks who do not drive will not be burdened by the regular toll increases as toll rates affect transport charges which will impact the cost of goods and services eg foodstuffs ,consumbales, durable goods,public transport etc etc. Mahathir and others… Read more »

NoMorHopeInMalaysia

Where can we find this kind of business deal in this world??
Only in Malaysia !!
Company is making over billion ringgit profit and yet justifiable to increase the toll.
Stupid people signing stupid contracts!!

tan, tanjong bungah

Hi everyone,

As has been suggested by many, since the Govt is the major shareholder of the highway toll concessionares, a study should be quickly undertaken with a view of taking PLUS, others, private.

The govt can buy up the minority shareholders. The projections from various professionals and groups have shown that this would be cheaper for the taxpayers in the long run, in some cases even in the medium term! If this is the case, the question is “Why the govt is so reluctant to do so?” Vested interests of family and cronies? Prove rakyat like me wrong!!

deepo

you are lucky to have a good highway…back in sarawak…the highway is damn sucks….plz tell this to White Hair regime..

radin kamal

Anil, you have hit the nail right on the head. The privatisation of public utilities that started in the 80s by ‘Bapa Pengswastaan’ has only enriched a minority at the expense of the majority(the Rakyat).
Nationalising all of them is LONG OVERDUE

Zhang

If we wish to Nationalise the Malaysian Highway, the first thing we have to do is to vote out BN government, as history has shown that ,non of the ruling power can reform itself.The only way is to topper the government through general election.

KongKor

Either way, the people are the big loser. What a CONcesion!

Toyol nephew

how else can the `powers that be` afford to offer the froggies 10 20 or 50 million to jump around.

if TPTB ask me to jump – i ‘ll reply “how high?” ..

john vinceans

The only way we can stop this toll hike and to see light at the end of the tunnel is through our ballot box.

Andrew I

Testing the waters yet again. Or is it putting yourself in a good light?

Or even more likely, justifying a new form of regressive taxation? How often do you use the highways?