Tuesday, 10 May 2011

You are my candy, girl

Another 20 sen/kilogram got removed from the domestic sugar subsidy programme.

After some investigation, I have to say that sugar consumption per capita varies a lot by countries [see graph]. And its not income dependent. A typical Japanese consumes the same amount of sugar as someone from Haiti!

Among the other surprising findings - hopefullythe International Sugar Organization has got the data for consumption right - is that Singaporeans consume even more sugar than us over-subsidized Malaysians! Might just send this data to PEMANDU just to see their reaction. One hypothesis that springs to mind is that as the influx of Malaysians to Singapore continues to increase, they bring with them their sugar addiction.

In any case, Malaysia is seriously on the wrong side scale. Whether or not Malaysians respond to price effects (i.e.  find a better substitute or altogether forego sugar consumption) remains to be seen - not enough data to confirm otherwise, since last year. At present, according to the latest CPI weights, sugar consumption is around 0.25% of the total basket; the other component that's likely going to get directly affected - Food from Cafes and Restaurants - is another 2.95% of the total basket.

1 comment: