Earlier this month on the 5th of July, Malaysian smokers were dealt with another big blow when the local cigarette and tobacco manufacturers and producers have to revise and raise the existing cigarette prices after being slapped with a hefty 25% increase in excise duty by the Malaysian government. Suddenly smokers find that the price of a pack of 20s for any major cigarette brands in Malaysia is now almost reaching Malaysian ringgit $10.00 for a packet! Preposterous!
I knew sooner or later that Malaysian smokers would have to surrender their addictions on those expensive brands to some other cheaper alternatives. Last few days, I went around town and interrogated a few local grocery store and mini market owners. They admitted that the sales of major cigarette brands are dropping sharply and the Malaysian Malays are now going for some cheaper alternatives. I asked them whether they could pinpoint which cheaper alternative is the most popular among Malaysian Malays nowadays and they have singled out this one particular brand from the rest.
All right readers! The most popular brand of cigarette among Malaysian Malays nowadays according to local grocery store and mini market owners is SAAT! It is produced by AKJM Sdn Bhd (equivalent to a private limited company). Yeah, I’m sure not many of you have heard of this particular brand just yet. It is highly popular in small towns and rural areas though. As of time of writing, it only comes in packets of 14s. When it first hit the market, the retail price was Malaysian ringgit $2.90 but recently it has risen to $3.50. Still, it is far cheaper than those expensive brands. If you’re asking me about the taste, well some smokers said that it tastes a bit mild but it does have some kicks. At least, that’s what they told me.
To all Malaysian Malay women (wanita Melayu) out there, if your close family members, boyfriends, fiancés and husbands are smokers and they wasted a lot of their money on those expensive brands, tell them today that they now have a cheaper alternative. Of course, it would be better off for them if they can totally quit their smoking habits all together. :-)