Pos Malaysia has announced that effective from September 1, 2019, it will discontinue road tax renewals for private vehicles with an engine capacity of 2,000 cc and above at all its post offices located in Sabah, Sarawak, Langkawi and Labuan. It added that the instruction to suspend the service – which will not impact motorists with vehicles under 2,000 cc displacement – was issued by the road transport department (JPJ).

While not detailed, the move by JPJ is very much aimed at curbing the act of motorists deliberately attempting to avoid paying a higher road tax, in the case of the Sabah and Sarawak connection.

This is because the road tax charged on vehicles in East Malaysia is less compared to vehicles in the Peninsular, and there are many cases of vehicles registered (and operating) in the Peninsular running with a Sabah/Sarawak-issued road tax without JPJ being informed of the change in location.

While the action is an offence under Section 24 of the Road Transport Act 1987, and penalties await those who get caught, it hasn’t stopped many from attempting subterfuge, and getting someone from East Malaysia to renew the road tax at post offices in Sabah/Sarawak has made it easy for this practice to continue.

The suspension of road tax renewal for higher engine capacity vehicles via the post office route in the four locations means that owners of such vehicles will now have to renew their road tax at JPJ/UTC offices, and will likely have to prove that the vehicle is actually within the state and not somewhere else.