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From stockbroker to selling ePetrol, goldmine for Rashid?



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May 26 2008
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Ask yourself if you’ve voted the opposition namely DAP, PKR or PAS during the 12th general election three months ago and if the answer is “yes” then give a round of applause to yourself. I was pretty sure there were hidden hands at work in manipulating the price of rice ever since the Padiberas Nasional Berhad (KLSE: BERNAS, stock-code 6866) was given the exclusive right as the sole importer and distributor of rice in the country but strangely controlled by politician. Compared to fuel price, the impact of escalating rice prices could be seen as minimal.

Supposing the government won the general election with more than 90% seats again, can you imagine what will be the fuel prices today? So, thanks to your support (in voting opposition) the government simply can’t increase the fuel price as and when it likes. If the government couldn’t care less by increasing the petrol price by a whopping RM0.30 a liter when the oil prices were at $60 a barrel, I would be over-generous to estimate that the government would have increased it by RM1.00 a liter to RM2.92 a liter based on current global oil prices of above $130 a barrel. But knowing the arrogance and corruptness of the government, even RM3.92 a liter could be an understatement. Thank God you voted the opposition to at least show the power of Makkal Sakti.

ePetrol kioskNow, at least the government is being forced to use their brains to formulate a better way to tackle the fuel price issue. The latest proposal was the use of MyKad to determine if you’re qualified for fuel or petrol subsidy via ePetrol solution. It was reported that ePetrol Holdings Sdn Bhd’s fuel subsidy management module has the capability and flexibility to accept any set of rules to effectively monitor, manage and control fuel subsidies down to the individual consumer level. You can basically pay with debit, credit or prepaid payment services.

All you need to do is to insert your MyKad into the petrol pump reader, pumps the amount of fuel needed (or available from the information shown) and you’re set to go. Somehow it works like a credit or mobile prepaid system – you’re allowed to enjoy the subsidy based on a total amount pre-determined. This leads to the question of how much of fuel subsidy would be allocated and what are the basis for applying such formula on an individual. It would be difficult, not to mention silly to say Tom is entitled RM400 of subsidized petrol per month but Dick gets to enjoy $700 a month. A salesman would scores more mileage than a normal administration officer.

ePetrol applicable to illegal immigrantsThe government is highly likely to replace the existing research octane number (RON) 92 and 97 with RON 95 and 99. Whether it is worthwhile to abuse the use of ePetrol solution depends very much on the price difference for both RON 95 and 99. Users of RON 99 will likely to be punished with high price to compensate for the RON 95’s subsidy because majority is expected to have no choice but to settle for the lower quality. However there’s a group of people who might abuse such system. Millions of illegal immigrants especially those that have outnumbered even the local people of Sabah but was granted MyKad under project Dr M could see this as an opportunity to buy and sell (or renting their MyKad) petrol for quick profits. In option trading we call this the “spread” and market makers make good money from such difference.

And don’t forget that freaking rich bosses might be stingy enough to ask their drivers to use their MyKad to fill-up their Benz or BMW tanks with subsidized fuel. On the other hand I can ask my neighbor’s son or daughter to fill up my tanks as well. Can the government guarantee that credits stolen using clone MyKad chips will be compensated? I know if someone cloned my CitiBank credit card to pump in petrol, I just need to make a report or deny such transaction and their “system” is intelligent enough to verify my claims and offset the transaction automatically.

Rashid HussainWho owns ePetrol Holdings Sdn Bhd? Surprisingly one of the owners is Tan Sri Rashid Hussain (founder of RHB, Rashid Hussain Berhad) while the other owner is Dialog Group Bhd chairman and group MD Ngau Boon Keat. Just what the heck is a former stockbroker doing selling petrol? How much would the investment for such system for all the petrol kiosks? Somebody is set to make huge profit out of ePetrol solution.

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Comments

Hi,

This is a super good article. I like it, at least we can know what is going on with Gov company? How come they setup a company whereby the management team is themself? Shall they opened to public?

Are there other alternatives besides using services from ePetrol Holdings Sdn Bhd?The company’s directors are closely linked to UMNO.Approval on ePetrol could shake the confidence of Rakyat on Pak Lah,who swore to increase transparency and open tender.UMNO businessmen can lobby for the approval.

I hope the media will reveal the owners of ePetrol.

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