As we watch 2013 wrapping up, the government continues to lay down shock waves of previews for 2014. To sum it all up, it’s a sneak peek of an upward trend of “inflation”.
Whether or not our hearts are prepared to handle, fate couldn’t care less.
“The middle income earners will face a painful adjustment to realign their lifestyles with rising prices. Dining out could soon be a luxury. The middle-income patrons of coffee outlets will have to either cut down their visits or opt for cheaper alternatives. A decline in quality of living could be inevitable, should the goods and services tax (GST) be imposed without adjustments in income tax rates.” (Esther Lee, Highlight Middle-Class Pain, 9 September 2013)
Why is it happening?
Generally consumer prices are constantly fluctuating due to many factors, one of which is predominantly due to the world petrol prices volatility, while we see our business traders taking advantage to the brim of the situation, creating a trend of which prices goes up but never come down.
However since the announcement of the Malaysia Budget 2014 in last October, the restructuring of prices continue as the government is gradually letting go of their hands in providing subsidies in some areas. Just a quick summary view of the budget.
Many market speculations are singing a similar tune.
“The World Bank, in a report last week, had warned that Malaysian households are in for a tough time next year, as prices of consumer goods are expected to rise due to subsidy cuts for fuel. This, in turn, has increased the cost of food and electricity.” (The Malaysian Times, “Tough Situation”, have to Raise Price, 16 December 2013)
“Malaysia has faced its steepest inflation rate hike in 20 months, mainly caused by the fuel subsidy cut in September which increased pump price by 20 sen per litre, Maybank Investment Bank (IB) has said. The research house also predicted that inflation rate will likely accelerate next year compared to 2013, as a result of the recent sugar subsidy cut announced in Budget 2014 last week.” (Zurairi Ar, After Subsidy Cuts Inflation Rate Spikes and likely to Accelerate, 29 October 2013)
What is happening?
We are pretty sure there are many questions looming in one’s mind as soon as the news reaches the ears. One of it would be “is it going to be a pinch or a sting?”
The ongoing debatable issues:
– The proposal for increase of housing assessment rates for Kuala Lumpur’s city houses is seen unjustifiable
– The Goods Service Tax (GST) is set effective from 1 April 2015
These factors will be directly or indirectly affecting the consumer prices of our grocery shopping and dining out experiences. Can our wallets still be smiling?
Who will be mostly affected?
“In Malaysia, a large proportion of the population comes under the middle income category. There is no doubt this group will experience price pressure (from the subsidy cut and increase in cost of living) and as a result they have to spend less than before, RAM Holdings Bhd group chief economist Dr Yeah Kim Leng said.
The middle income earners are mostly taxpayers and are the vast majority who drive consumer spending – a main growth engine for the domestic economy.” (Esther Lee, Highlight Middle-Class Pain, 9 September 2013)
Are we the ONLY NATION experiencing the increase of food prices?
We see many disgruntled voters mocking at the democratic rights of others on the social media platforms, blaming them for the lost of the almost winning opposition parties, claiming that situation would had been better if they are the ones handling, while many blaming the ruling government for the current situation if not for the years of mismanagement of funds.
Now, please just hold your horses for a moment, is it fair to push ALL the BLAME to the ruling government or those who voted for the ruling party? Please take some time to understand the current situation that we are facing in this era.
This video is from one our past article.
Any Quick Fix?
Since we are at this juncture, how will you respond to this situation? Can your hearts hold any longer as the holes in your pockets multiply and go wider?
What choices do we have but to buckle up in tightening our belts – eating more home cooked meals, growing own food in your house garden, supporting our local food producers who are mostly living outside Klang Valley, spending lesser in shopping for wants, planning out your journeys, perhaps going about places with the two wheeled vehicles such as motorbike or bicycle or even looking into carpooling option if you had not been doing so, and etc.
Dropping off the Sulking and Dramas Perhaps?
Is it going to be a gradual or a sharp lifestyle change for many? Like many, we wondered too.
As mentioned before in our previous article, “We ought to revolutionize how we perceive our food in the world today as things are not the same any more in comparison to the days of our parents and grandparents. It is sad but is true, it might be too late if one only comes to realization when the future for our children is no longer in existence. The choice starts with you.”
Having a proper perspective of this matter is important.
We will leave the rest to you as it’s your call for here onwards.