Malaysia is most definitely treading on shaky international precedent. Rarely does one country publicly publish its grievances with another - in this case, Malaysia publishing a booklet on its much publicised water dispute with neighbouring Singapore. It'll be interesting to see how our friends across the Causeway respond to this throw of the gauntlet at their feet.
Choice excerpts from the report:
Although Singapore has generated a profit of RM662.5 million from Malaysian raw water in 2001 alone, Singapore paid Johor only RM2.39 million - or S$1.09 million or US$628,947- in 2001 for a whole year’s supply of water. This works out to just 26 Singapore cents (US 15 cents) per person per year.
In other words, Singaporeans got all the water they wanted from Malaysia for an
entire year for just one small bite of a Big Mac.
On the other hand, Johor paid Singapore RM6.3 million for the treated water it took in 2001.
From the conclusion:
In Singapore dollar terms, the amounts involved are minuscule. Even if Singapore were to pay Malaysia RM6.25 per 1,000 gallons, the cost for an ENTIRE YEAR’S SUPPLY OF WATER LAST YEAR would have amounted to only S$268.1 million -just 0.17 per cent of Singapore’s 2002 Gross Domestic Product - or less than one-fifth of one per cent of Singapore’s GDP. At RM6.25 per 1,000 gallons, each of the 4,163,000 people living in Singapore will pay just S$64.40 or less than 19 Big Macs in exchange for a whole year’s supply of Johor water.
Even at RM6.25 per 1,000 gallons, the cost of a whole year’s supply of water to a person living in Singapore is less than 0.17 per cent of his per capita GDP of S$37,401 last year. Singapore enjoys one of the highest standards of living in Asia and is by far the richest among Asean countries, apart from Brunei. The Singapore Government’s reluctance to pay an easily affordable and fair price is puzzling.
What a mess. Read the whole report from the National Economic Action Council (NEAC) July 2003 below in multiple formats:
Get the originals here: