The latest announcement by the Malaysian Highway Authority that starting from 1st August 2014, all vehicles going to Singapore will be charged RM6.80 at the CIQ toll to Singapore and RM9.70 at the CIQ toll from Singapore received some mixed reaction by the public.
With the advent of Singapore charging foreign vehicles coming in to Singapore at SGD35 (RM90) from SGD20 (RM52) starting from 1st August 2014 as well (an extra of RM38), Malaysia seemed to reciprocate with a lesser amount of quantum albeit, with a blanket charges on all vehicles.
Obviously leading the way in going against this move are the opposition portals, and unsurprisingly, Pakatan Rakyat’s politicians.
It is quite alarming to see the amount of disinformation coming out from these portals (and those politicians). For one, the toll charged is not for the use of the highway (the Eastern Dispersal Link highway) leading up to the toll, but rather only for vehicles using the CIQ.
All other users using the EDL but are not going to Singapore will not be charged at all. The 8km highway itself is free to Johoreans for them traverse across Johor Bahru. And as the name implies, the highway had greatly dispersed traffic and reduced travelling time for Johoreans in their state capital city.
Among other things, out of 220,000 daily vehicles that are currently on the EDL highway, only 60,000 are the CIQ users and out of this 60,000 vehicles 80% of them are Singaporean cars. Meaning, 48,000 vehicles are Singaporeans!
Furthermore, and this is quite pertinent since Malaysians who care about other Malaysians who are working in Singapore, what they need to know is that Malaysians who are working in Singapore receive income from Singapore and pay their taxes to Singapore. As they use our highways without tax representation, surely a meagre amount of toll charges (82% less than what Singapore is charging us) will not cause their employers much loss of income.
And those who ride bikes to Singapore, are not charged at all.
Question now is, will the government be smart enough to counter any negative feedback received from the people going in and out from Singapore?