Pasir Gudang City Council agrees to organise townhall session over 400 per cent increase in rent

23 Mar 2023 06:42pm
Hassan (centre) in a meeting with traders in Kebayan and Semai Niaga areas at Taman Air Biru, Pasir Gudang.
Hassan (centre) in a meeting with traders in Kebayan and Semai Niaga areas at Taman Air Biru, Pasir Gudang.

PASIR GUDANG - The Pasir Gudang City Council (MBPG) has agreed to hold a town hall session with traders in Kebayan and Semai Niaga areas on March 29 over the new rental rates that had increased up to a whopping 400 per cent.

The city council in a statement today said they will provide explanation about the new rate and also announce several other initiatives for the traders involved.

"The city council has basically re-adjusted all rents and operating costs in Kebayan and Semai Niaga considering it haven't been updated for the past 10 years.

"The operating cost for Kebayan and Semai Niaga in Pasir Gudang is almost RM1.6 million per year. However, the city council still needs to cover RM800,000 per year even after adjusting all rental rates and operating cost," the statement stated.

On Tuesday, some of the 226 traders from 18 Kebayan and Semai Niaga areas held a press conference here because they were burdened by the increase of rent by between 200 to 400 per cent since last January.

The traders are among those in Kebayan Jalan Sena, Kebayan Taman Mawar, Kebayan Sungai Buluh, Kebayan Taman Pasir Putih, Semai Niaga Taman Cendana and Semai Niaga Taman Air Biru who described the increase as the city council trying to 'kill' them or make them go out of business.

Previously, they were charged RM490 for montly rent but the amount had increased to RM2,028 since Jan 1.

Meanwhile, Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Abdul Karim said the agreement between the local authority and the traders was seen as one-sided and the traders claimed they were forced to sign the agreement.

"I have personally read the rental agreement and I consider it to be biased and signed under duress.

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"I appeal to the Pasir Gudang mayor to review and re-examine Pasir Gudang City Council's decision to increase the rent," he said.