Monday, June 16, 2008

Petronas To Open Its Ledgers To The Public?

Malaysia's state oil company Petronas will open its books to the public after a decision to hike fuel prices by more than 40 percent set off days of protests, news reports said on Monday.

The reports come with a major opposition party still calling for as many as 100,000 people to take to the streets at a rally early next month amid growing anger over the cost of fuel in Malaysia, which is heavily state subsidised.

Nor Mohammed Yakcop, the country's second finance minister, told the New Straits Times newspaper that Petronas could open its ledgers to the public as soon as next week as the government looks at cutting the fuel subsidy.

"As a government that is entrusted by the people, we have to make sure our revenues are spent prudently," he said.

The government has forecast that unless subsidies are restructured, it will spend around 10 billion ringgit (3.1 billion dollars) in the second half of 2008 in the face of a global surge in oil prices .

But Nor Mohammed brushed off calls to use the Petronas revenues to finance the subsidy. "We can't simply spend all our revenue on the people of this generation," he said. "What will happen to our children in the next generation and beyond?"

Malaysia hiked its fuel price by 41 percent earlier this month, which raised the price of petrol to 2.70 ringgit (84 cents) per litre.

Opposition groups welcomed the news that Petronas would show how it has spent its money. "The time has come for the full accounting of its stewardship of the country's oil billions," said Lim Kit Siang from the Democratic Action Party. There should be a full explanation with regards to the management of the funds, with nothing hidden from the public," he told AFP.

***** Whether there will be full disclosure or a distilled, abridged version for public consumption remains to be seen. Perhaps Dr Mahathir might come out screaming tomorrow that this is yet another ploy to 'shut him up' from speaking out. If hypothetically Petronas should release a true and verifiable record of its accounts, then apart from Pak Lah, Dr M too will have his hands full answering a lot of inconvenient questions on their roles in the manipulation of the Petronas billions.
Image - Source

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Blogger Billy said...

Even if PETRONAS were to disclose their accounts to the public, I still don't trust these fellows as the books may have been 'coloured'. I would rather that, before presenting it to Parliament, appoint an independent auditor, preferably one of international standing, to vet through the books and the same auditors to report to Parliament. It is just like asking Iran to disclose whether they have nuclear devices in their armaments. That is why the IEAE is so important. Get it?

4:49 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

After hiding the accounts for so long, do we trust the figures released would be the real facts. Billy's suggestion is correct, correct, correct. We should appoint a reputable international auditor to vet the truth, lest we are fooled again.

4:58 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PETRONAS is subject to AUDIT and this is being done by a BIG 4 since DAY 1. There were various restrictions imposed on the auditors, such as who may audit the Treasury unit, etc. However such similar restrictions do exist for other KLSE listed companies too! Therefore this restriction is not a big issue BUT it would be nice IF all such restrictions can be removed.....

5:04 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somebody enlighten me please, does it really need to be audited and disclose its accounts to the public? What about Perwaja? What about other GLCs?

What if Petronas has been privatized without the knowing of the public?

5:40 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Companies under the Companies Act need to have accounted audited, irrespective whether private or public.

On question as to whether it need to be OPEN to the public, I do not believe that we have a law requiring accounts to be made PUBLIC (i.e. open to all rakyat) even if the company is a Public Company. Well, unless you are a stakeholder of the Public Company, there is no reason why you need to be given access to the Audited Accounts of a Public Company.

5:49 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's face it, the BN is not going to allow Petronas to disclose "everything"! Come on, the Public is going to find out how the BN has squandered the Billions of $ that Petronas has earned?
Ya rite!!!!!

6:40 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Chun said...

Well, at least the public is going to see how Petronas has optioned (and futured) the vast majority of Malaysia's O&G output to Japan till 2015 at USD100/barrel. That's why an oil producing country cannot afford to 'subsidise' its own petrol. They probably never expected that the price of gas would ever breach the USD100/barrel mark in 2000 when they inked the deal. Now, they have to sell gas to Japan at USD100/barrel and buy back gas at USD133/barrel. The USD33/barrel is the subsidy. The really interesting question is: whatever happened to the money when crude was trading at USD45/barrel, right up till about 3-4 years ago? Mmm?

8:38 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the past, PETRONAS money has been used for bailing Bank Bumiputra (BMFL Affairs), buying Dayabumi, etc. All these SPECIAL projects cost PETRONAS billions!

9:54 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can be sure that all the money used for the "bail-outs" will not be shown to the Public!
Yet, I may be wrong (I hope I'm wrong), let's see what happens.

10:48 AM GMT+8  
Anonymous darcwil said...

Don't get me wrong, but hasnt the Petronas accounts been public all this while? So what IS the fuss here about actually?? Hassan Merican's statement:

12:27 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous yuking said...

New Cabinet:

Prime Minister - Anwar

Deputy Prime Minister - Lim Kit Siang

Agriculture Minister -

Community Minister -

Culture Minister - Farish Noor

Defence Minister - Azmin Ali

Education Minister - Nga Kor Ming

Environment Minister - Teresa Kok

Finance Minister - Tony Pua

Foreign Minister - Ramasamy

Health Minister - Tan Seng Giaw

Home Minister -

Information Minister - Jeff Ooi

Law Minister - Teng Chang Khim

Manpower Minister -

Sports Minister -

Technology Minister - Nizar

Trade Minister - Khalid

Transport Minister - Liew Chin Tong

Tourism Minister -

1:01 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous exige said...

it's hard for them to make this move..tak buat kena hentam, sudah buat kena hentam juga..

1:54 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Biri Biri said...

well ya it has always been a public document. audited by the Big 4 or not, I think we haven't forgotten those ugly, scandalous lessons in corporate governance, so that shadow of doubt is justified, methinks

2:41 PM GMT+8  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your picture caption should be "Full Monty". Remember the british movie..

7:49 PM GMT+8  

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