SINGAPORE, 20 Jan 2017:
Singapore will withdraw its Reciprocal Road Charge if Malaysia subsequently withdraws its Road Charge, or implements it in a non-discriminatory way, says the republic’s Ministry of Transport (MOT).
MOT described the ‘non-discriminatory way’ as Malaysia should implement its road charge at all of its land borders, at an equal cost and on all non-Malaysian-registered cars.
“We have a long-standing policy of matching any levy, tolls or fees charged by Malaysia for using the road links between Singapore and Malaysia,” the ministry said, replying to why Singapore introduced the Reciprocal Road Charge.
The question-and-answer format related to the Reciprocal Road Charge was posted on www.gov.sg portal under ‘Factually’ segment for ‘Transport & Motoring’ topic.
The portal is an official online communication platform and repository of the Singapore government, providing the public with latest policy announcements, information and news on Singapore.
MOT said there were ‘fundamental differences’ between Singapore’s Vehicle Entry Permit (VEP) and Malaysia’s road charge.
MOT said Malaysia’s road charge was a levy imposed on all non-Malaysian-registered cars entering Malaysia via Johor at all times.
Singapore’s VEP, on the other hand, was introduced to equalise the cost of owning and using a foreign-registered car or motorcycle in Singapore, with the cost of owning and using a Singapore-registered car or motorcycle.
“This is necessary to ensure fairness, as Singapore-registered vehicles are subjected to significantly different costs from foreign-registered vehicles, such as the Certificate of Entitlement (COE) premiums and vehicle taxes.”
MOT noted that concessions were also given under the VEP scheme. “All foreign-registered cars and motorcycles enjoy 10 VEP-free weekdays a year. There is also no VEP fee if cars enter and exit Singapore on weekends and public holidays, or after work hours (between 5pm to 2am) on weekdays.”
On whether the Singapore VEP was discriminatory, MOT said: “No, it is applied fairly to all foreign-registered cars and motorcycles and at all vehicle entry points into Singapore.
“However, the Malaysian Road Charge is levied on Singapore cars. It is not clear when Malaysia will extend its road charge to its other borders with Thailand, Brunei or Indonesia.”
Singapore had on announced on Monday that all foreign-registered cars would have to pay the Reciprocal Road Charge of S$6.40 per entry when they entered Singapore via the Tuas or Woodlands Checkpoint from Feb 15.
The Reciprocal Road Charge mirrors Malaysia’s road charge of RM20 (about S$6.50) per entry for non-Malaysia registered cars entering Malaysia’s state of Johor, which was implemented on 1 Nov 2016.