KUALA LUMPUR: The government's energy roadmap should not be swayed by political or populist pressures of the day so that the business environment can remain stable, said Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM).

Its president, Datuk Seri Saw Choo Boon said the business community must be assured of a certain level of certainty and predictability as they cannot operate when the energy roadmap is altered at times.

"The energy roadmap must be clear and not give in to political intervention because if it is not consistent, it will give the impression that the government is not serious in its implementation," Saw told participants at the sixth Energy Forum here yesterday.

He said the government should have a clearer roadmap on the energy pricing reforms and remain consistent with its implementation in order to create a stable business environment.

"The roadmap must elaborate steps that would be taken by the government to reduce energy-related subsidies including the timeframe and amount of reduction annually and during the roadmap implementation, we must stick to what has been planned unless there are good reasons to change it.

"It can't be altered just because of public pressure as it will disrupt the entire transformation of energy pricing and doesn't create certainty and the roadmap must also be released to the public to show transparency in its implementation.”

Saw said as an example, Malaysia has announced its managed float system to determine fuel prices but till this day, nobody really knows how it works.

"Malaysia must emulate Thailand which also uses a managed float system for its oil price and it readily shares the information with the public.”

Saw said the Energy Roadmap must also take into account what will happen when oil price goes up and look at how it will readjust to the situation which include the weaning or the reintroduction of subsidies.

Malaysia Petroleum Resources Corp president and chief executive officer Datuk Shahrol Halmi concurred, saying that political considerations will put a risk in business planning and can be costly.

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