Petronas Dagangan Bhd (PDB), a subsidiary of state oil and gas company Petronas, plans to invest RM350 million over the next six months on 60 to 70 new retail stations. (US$1=RM3.8).

PDB managing director and CEO Ibrahim Marsidi said the expansion was needed to meet rising fuel consumption throughout the country brought on by the increase in the number of vehicles and the growth in the local shipping industry. The company now owns and operates 690 service stations nationwide.

“We are confident that PDB will continue to chart positive growth in sales for the financial year ending March 31, 2005,” he told reporters recently.

According to the Star newspaper, PDB has teamed up with Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) and A&W restaurant operator KUB Bhd to launch the first Petronas service centre which features a Maybank branch and drive-in ATM service, an A&W outlet and the regular Mesra service. These facilities operate round the clock .

Mr Ibrahim said PDB was expected to start another such three-in-one service centre in Klang Valley soon. Maybank has to date set up 57 ATM and 32 e-Kawanku centres at Petronas service centres.