PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association (Presma) has given an assurance that its members will not increase prices of their food and drinks, even if the cost of raw materials goes up following the zero-rating of the goods and services tax (GST).
Its president, Ayoob Khan Yakub, said he was not aware that 30% of the mamak (Indian Muslim) food outlets in the country had raised their prices after the GST rate was zero-rated from June 1 by the new Pakatan Harapan (PH) government.
Speaking to FMT, he said he was made aware of the matter only today after it had been highlighted by Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Saifuddin Nasution.
“Mamak restaurant operators will not hike up prices following the zero-rating of the GST. The rates will remain as before,” he said, adding members had in fact brought their prices down.
He said the outlets that had increased the prices were likely not members of the association.
Ayoob Khan said Presma would meet the domestic trade and consumer affairs ministry to obtain further details on the issue and attempt to resolve the problem.
Yesterday, Saifuddin had said the ministry found that 30% of all the mamak food outlets had hiked up their prices.
He said the percentage was obtained by comparing food prices at the premises before and after the implementation of the zero-rated GST.
He said the remaining 70% had actually reduced their prices in the same period.
“So we are now actively identifying restaurants that are still stubborn and not lowering food prices,” he said.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Indian Restaurant Owners Association (Primas) president Muthusamy Thirumeni said most of the Indian food operators had not adjusted their prices, adding that many had even absorbed the GST costs when the tax was in force.
“After the GST rate was changed, the Indian restaurants stuck to the same prices although the tax had become zero-rated,” he said.