Views

Your views: Simplify COE system

I refer to reader Audrey Chin's call to "Review COE system to make it fairer" (The New Paper, April 27).

I believe the certificate of entitlement (COE) is a good policy - call it a necessary evil - to manage the vehicle population in Singapore, but, as implemented now, it is complex and unfair and suffers from high price volatility.

Over the years, we have seen COE prices vary between $50 and $100,000.

At times, the COE for small and medium-sized cars can be higher than that for big luxury cars.

The system may even have resulted in an increase in the ratio of large cars in land-scarce Singapore.

The different categories also make the bidding unnecessarily complex. I propose that all the car COE categories be merged into one, for which buyers will bid.

The actual COE to be paid can then be adjusted for the size of the car up to, say, 150 per cent of the bid price.

For example, if the prevailing bid price of a car COE is $40,000, the actual COE to be paid by the buyer can vary between, say, $35,000 for an 800cc car to $60,000 for a car of 4,800cc or more.

This would make the system simpler and fairer, while meeting the objective of managing vehicle population.


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