Jumaat, 22 Julai 2011

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10 di tawau - Google Blog Search

Thriving business at <b>Tawau&#39;s</b> unofficial port | Free Malaysia Today

Posted: 22 Jul 2011 02:24 AM PDT

Goverment subsidised rice, sugar and oil are sold in Kalimantan for a good profit and locals believe the authorities are supporting the racket.

TAWAU: Alongside Tawau's official port, there thrives an 'unofficial' sub-unit through which daily provisions are smuggled out to a nearby island shared by Indonesia.

According to a local businessman, the authorities are aware of the bags of 'Beras Nasional' rice, sugar and oil that are 'exported' to Pulau Sebatik – an island shared by Malaysia and Indonesia – but generally turn a blind eye.

"This had been going on for ages. I think they (the authorities) know but they keep quiet, maybe they also profit from this smugglings, who knows…" he said.

According to him the supplies of provisions were heading to Sebatik Island where they fetch a high price on the Indonesian side.

A 20-something youth, who was unloading sugar packs from his bicycle at the port, told us that the goods "untuk dijual di Indonesia pak".

He said his job was to transfer the 'provisons' from his boss' shop in Tawau to the waiting 'petek-petek' or boats at the port.

But others who were approached were less confiding. They claimed that the rice, sugar and cooking oil are also meant for Sabahans in Sebatik Island.

Pulau Sebatik is almost equally divided between Malaysia and Indonesia, thanks to an old colonial Anglo-Dutch arrangement.

Each morning Tawau's unofficial port sees tonnes of state-subsidised packets of rice, sugar and cooking oil being loaded non-stop onto the many boats that ply the one-hour boat trip from Tawau to Sebatik.

Once on the island, some of the goods are transported to the kampungs and towns on the Indonesian side while the rest are retained on the Sabah side to maintain the 'cover' story that these supplies were meants for Sabahans.

The three essential food items fetch much higher prices in Indonesia.

Sugar for instance which is sold at RM2.40 per kilogramme here fetches more than RM4.00 on the other side.

The Malaysia-Kalimantan border is only 15 minutes from Tawau and movement in an out is fairly easy, according to locals here.

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