CAR wash operators have voiced their disappointment with authorities as they noted that the activities of illegal competitors have shown no signs of abating.
The entrepreneurs said that they have lodged a complaint before the municipal enforcement unit over the recent weeks but added that this has not effectively stopped the illegal operators from carrying out their businesses.
Because they are allowed to continue, the car wash companies said, the legitimate businessmen still incur losses.
"If this situation goes on then we, as legal companies, will continue to face huge losses in this business and we would close down," said Azhan Nikman, the owner of car wash and auto-detailing workshop Pro Auto-K Services in Menglait.
Azhan, who spoke on behalf of the disgruntled car wash and detailing operators in Brunei, told The Brunei Times that that the illegal operators continue to be getting customers even after the report has been lodged.
He also said the illegal operators were not fulfilling the safety requirements of a proper car wash operator, lack the facilities and equipment to ensure a safe and quality service and are operating under makeshift tents.
He said that illegal competitors have been taking away customers with "excessively low prices".
According to Azhan, he was only informed by one of the enforcers at the Municipal Department that the authorities had conducted visits and issued stern warnings to a number of sites in Kiarong, Gadong and Batu Bersurat over the past week.
Azhan also claimed he discovered that some of the illegal operators disappeared during surprise visits made by the municipal enforcement unit, and that they continued to operate "under their noses".
"We urge the authorities to do whatever it takes to really put an end to these activities," he said.
When reached by The Brunei Times yesterday, the Municipal Department declined to comment on the issue.
Jonathan Ong, lead detailer at Max Tyres and Rims, said in a previous interview that business was bad towards the end of the month before pay day, when customers got attracted to cheaper car wash services offered by the illegal operators.
"If these operators want to do business and compete with us, we would prefer that they compete in a proper way," he had said.
Ong said that a proper car wash business should operate in an appropriate environment with approved draining system and tile flooring as stipulated by the Municipal Department and the Ministry of Health.
The Brunei Times
Wednesday, November 28, 2012
Feel free to comment on this article using your Facebook account. By submitting your comment, you agree to the Terms and Conditions for the use of this comments feature, as stated here.