May 20, 2011, KOTA KINABALU: The Federation of Sabah Lorry Transportation Association (FSLTA) has voiced sadness over the government’s decision to abolish the super diesel subsidy for commercial vehicles next month.
Its secretary general, Adrian Ho when contacted yesterday said as a state lorry association, they are representing the lorry associations of West Coast, Sandakan and Tawau to appeal to the relevant ministry to reconsider the decision.
“The gross vehicle weight (BDM) allowed in Sabah is very different from the Peninsular. The maximum BDM allowed in Peninsular is 53,000 kilograms and whereas for Sabah it is restricted to 38,000 kilograms, irrespective of the number of axle configurations.
“This difference in weight between Sabah and Peninsular creates disadvantages in terms of lesser payload, higher unit cost, higher operating cost and other aspects,” said Ho.
He said the road tax is also very different between Sabah and Peninsular.
Ho said in Peninsular a prime mover can pull seven units of container trailers, with RM1,200 road tax per year for prime mover and seven units of container trailers are not listed.
However, it is different in Sabah, where with the same configuration, the road tax is RM2,448 times for seven units of container trailers per annum. The total road tax is RM 17,136 per annum.
Apart from the road tax, Ho also said the cost of spare parts and tyres are normally 30 per cent more higher in the state than in Peninsular.
He said the under-developed infrastructure and roads coupled with mountain terrains made it more costly to operate commercial vehicles in Sabah.
According to Ho, the federation has sent a letter to the Domestic Trade, Co-operatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob on the issue.
FSLTA is hoping the government will not abolish the the diesel subsidy.