Published on December 23rd, 2019 | by Subhash Nair


Here’s What’s Wrong with the ASEAN Fuel Price Comparison

I don’t usually frequent petrol stations besides my local BHPetrol station. But last Saturday I had to make an unplanned refuel run in Cheras, so I stopped by the closest station. It happened to be this particular station opposite Sunway Velocity Mall. I noticed something that grabbed my attention (and the attention of this rider too).

There was a large vertically-oriented screen outside the Mart that cycled between the company’s ads and this fuel price comparison. The fuel price comparison pitched the current RON95 petrol price (RM/L) and Euro2M diesel price (RM/L) against prices in other ASEAN countries.

Original photo before being cropped

Apparently this is a government move from earlier in 2019, but we haven’t seen it elsewhere. Perhaps the size of the display was a factor here. Regardless, it’s not the most accurate or detailed comparison.

Here are the countries compared in the order they are arranged (Highest petrol price to lowest):

  • Singapore
  • Laos
  • Thailand
  • Cambodia
  • The Philippines
  • Vietnam
  • Indonesia
  • Myanmar
  • Malaysia

A footnote at the bottom clarified that the prices were taken from this website, except for the Bruneian fuel prices which were taken from We tried accessing this website, but it failed to open, so either we’ve misread the link provided, there was a typo, or this is an outdated or inaccurate source. Please let us know, people who supplied this source.


It’s also worth noting that the prices of fuel from other countries are from the 25th of November 2019, which is from about a month ago. There are a few problems with this comparison and this is a good place to start.

  1. There’s no reason why the fuel prices can’t be updated in real time or at least weekly. They indicate that the Malaysian fuel prices are the only ones not from the 25th of November. So if the price of fuel was particularly high in other countries then, they might feel like pegging the data to that date if newer data is unfavourable.
  2. The fuel grades are not indicated. We know what Malaysian fuels are being cited based on the prices shown. But we’re not told which grades of fuel they’re being compared against. Sure, the effect is negligible for most people driving most cars. But the data could be a little more accurate and more honestly portrayed.

There are other complaints about how the strength of currency, buying power, etc are not indicated that our readers have made clear in our recent Instram/Facebook cross-post. But we feel the two most immediate and clear changes are as above.

We’re not here to stir a storm, but rather want whoever’s in charge of this comparison to make the corrections to improve accuracy. That whatever effect they have in mind will hit home in the intended way. We also want to thank whoever made the comparison for being honest about when the prices were updated.

But there’s room for improvement, and we hope this can be improved upon soon.

About the Author

Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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