CIDB (The Construction Industry Development Board) launches campaign to pull young talent towards construction sector

Posted on : 16-05-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National Business

KUCHING: The Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) Malaysia, together with its assessment centre and training arm, Akademi Binaan Malaysia (ABM), yesterday launched the #SKILLSPOWER campaign as part of its strategy to boost the construction sector’s talent pool.
Based on the theme of ‘Competent and Holistic’, #SKILLSPOWER aims to attract young Malaysians to join the construction sector by raising the profile of the industry as a rewarding, sustainable and meaningful career choice.
The launch of #SKILLSPOWER was held in conjunction with ABM Northern Region’s 8th Graduation Ceremony, with 100 construction sector workers graduating from the Construction Industry Competency Training Programme (CICTP).
The guest of honour for the graduation ceremony was Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah, Menteri Besar of Kedah, who was represented by Datuk Tajul Urus Mat Zain, Kedah State Exco.
Present also at the event was Datuk Sri Zohari Akob, Secretary General of the Ministry of Works, who represented Datuk Sri Fadillah Yusof, the Minister of Works, Malaysia.
“Many Malaysians often overlook the construction sector as a path towards career success. As someone deeply engaged in the construction sector, I would like urge young Malaysians to join this sector as it provides youths with not only a rewarding and stable career but the opportunity to contribute to nation-building.
“In fact, this industry has grown consistently over the years, contributing significantly to Malaysia’s socio-economic transformation.
“In 2016 alone, the country’s construction sector grew by 7.4 per cent, showcasing its growth potential,” said Fadillah in his speech which was read by Zohari.
“Moreover, the Government is committed to further enhance the construction sector talent pool as part of its strategy to develop and transform the industry.
Since 2015, the CIDB Act (Act 520) has mandated that all construction site supervisors and all relevant skilled construction workers be accredited, to ensure our construction industry workers are competent, productive and of high quality.”
Since its establishment by CIDB Malaysia in 2010, ABM has trained over 205,710 construction workers under its CICTP of which 165,950 are for upskilling programmes while another 39,760 were youths seeking to enter the construction sector.
At ABM’s Northern Region Campus alone, over 34, 265 trainees have since graduated from the programmes offered of which 6,447 were youths out of secondary school or vocational colleges, while 27,818 are personnel currently involved in the construction industry.
To ensure that trainees are given the required industry experience after completing the CICTP at ABM, CIDB Malaysia has partnered with industry players to provide career placements for the graduates.
Since 2016, more than 600 graduates have received placement opportunities with the industry partners.
In addition, a total of 59 industry partners have also been involved in dialogues with ABM to ensure that the programmes offered by the training centre are current and relevant to industry needs.
SOURCE: THE BORNEO POST
KUCHING: The Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) Malaysia, together with its assessment centre and training arm, Akademi Binaan Malaysia (ABM), yesterday launched the #SKILLSPOWER campaign as part of its strategy to boost the construction sector’s talent pool.
Based on the theme of ‘Competent and Holistic’, #SKILLSPOWER aims to attract young Malaysians to join the construction sector by raising the profile of the industry as a rewarding, sustainable and meaningful career choice.
The launch of #SKILLSPOWER was held in conjunction with ABM Northern Region’s 8th Graduation Ceremony, with 100 construction sector workers graduating from the Construction Industry Competency Training Programme (CICTP).
The guest of honour for the graduation ceremony was Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah, Menteri Besar of Kedah, who was represented by Datuk Tajul Urus Mat Zain, Kedah State Exco.
Present also at the event was Datuk Sri Zohari Akob, Secretary General of the Ministry of Works, who represented Datuk Sri Fadillah Yusof, the Minister of Works, Malaysia.
“Many Malaysians often overlook the construction sector as a path towards career success. As someone deeply engaged in the construction sector, I would like urge young Malaysians to join this sector as it provides youths with not only a rewarding and stable career but the opportunity to contribute to nation-building.
“In fact, this industry has grown consistently over the years, contributing significantly to Malaysia’s socio-economic transformation.
“In 2016 alone, the country’s construction sector grew by 7.4 per cent, showcasing its growth potential,” said Fadillah in his speech which was read by Zohari.
“Moreover, the Government is committed to further enhance the construction sector talent pool as part of its strategy to develop and transform the industry.
Since 2015, the CIDB Act (Act 520) has mandated that all construction site supervisors and all relevant skilled construction workers be accredited, to ensure our construction industry workers are competent, productive and of high quality.”
Since its establishment by CIDB Malaysia in 2010, ABM has trained over 205,710 construction workers under its CICTP of which 165,950 are for upskilling programmes while another 39,760 were youths seeking to enter the construction sector.
At ABM’s Northern Region Campus alone, over 34, 265 trainees have since graduated from the programmes offered of which 6,447 were youths out of secondary school or vocational colleges, while 27,818 are personnel currently involved in the construction industry.
To ensure that trainees are given the required industry experience after completing the CICTP at ABM, CIDB Malaysia has partnered with industry players to provide career placements for the graduates.
Since 2016, more than 600 graduates have received placement opportunities with the industry partners.
In addition, a total of 59 industry partners have also been involved in dialogues with ABM to ensure that the programmes offered by the training centre are current and relevant to industry needs.
SOURCE: THE BORNEO POST

Petronas Chemicals sustains 99 per cent plant utilisation

Posted on : 16-05-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National Business

KUALA LUMPUR– Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd (PCG) reported a 99 per cent plant utilisation (PU) rate in the opening quarter of this year.
In a statement today, PCG said the sustained PU rate, which far surpassed the world-class benchmark, bore testimony to the ongoing efforts in ensuring high plant reliability and stable feed stock supply.
“During the quarter, crude oil prices were seen to firm up, lending support for firmer petrochemical product prices amidst improved demand and tight supply.
“Against this backdrop, the company closed the quarter with a revenue of RM4.7 billion, an increase of 49 per cent compared to the corresponding quarter,” it said.
PCG said revenue growth was mainly driven by a 16 per cent increase in sales volume and better product prices, supported by favourable foreign exchange.
The company’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), surged 69 per cent to RM1.9 billion compared to the corresponding quarter, anchored on the margin maximisation initiative which delivered higher product spread coupled with lower unit costs.
EBITDA margin rose from 36 per cent to 41 per cent, while profit after taxation more than doubled to RM1.4 billion.
“PCG posted a strong beat on earnings leveraging on strong operational and commercial excellence.
“Our sustained performance is underpinned by our commitment to health, safety and environment practices,” said Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Sazali Hamzah.
He also said despite an improvement in crude oil prices, petrochemical prices was forecast to remain volatile.
SOURCE– BERNAMA

KUALA LUMPUR– Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd (PCG) reported a 99 per cent plant utilisation (PU) rate in the opening quarter of this year.

In a statement today, PCG said the sustained PU rate, which far surpassed the world-class benchmark, bore testimony to the ongoing efforts in ensuring high plant reliability and stable feed stock supply.

“During the quarter, crude oil prices were seen to firm up, lending support for firmer petrochemical product prices amidst improved demand and tight supply.

“Against this backdrop, the company closed the quarter with a revenue of RM4.7 billion, an increase of 49 per cent compared to the corresponding quarter,” it said.

PCG said revenue growth was mainly driven by a 16 per cent increase in sales volume and better product prices, supported by favourable foreign exchange.

The company’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA), surged 69 per cent to RM1.9 billion compared to the corresponding quarter, anchored on the margin maximisation initiative which delivered higher product spread coupled with lower unit costs.

EBITDA margin rose from 36 per cent to 41 per cent, while profit after taxation more than doubled to RM1.4 billion.

“PCG posted a strong beat on earnings leveraging on strong operational and commercial excellence.

“Our sustained performance is underpinned by our commitment to health, safety and environment practices,” said Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Sazali Hamzah.

He also said despite an improvement in crude oil prices, petrochemical prices was forecast to remain volatile.

SOURCE– BERNAMA

Petronas LNG, MISC, Gas4Sea ink MoU to promote LNG

Posted on : 16-05-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National Business

KUALA LUMPUR: Petronas, via its unit Petronas LNG Ltd (PLL) and shipping affiliate MISC Bhd, has inked a non-binding deal with Gas4Sea partners to explore potential collaboration in promoting liquefied natural gas (LNG) as the preferred marine fuel.
Petronas, which also stands for Petroliam Nasional Bhd, said in a statement today the Gas4Sea partners are ENGIE S.A., Mitsubishi Corp and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK). The non-binding memorandum of understanding was inked last Tuesday (May 9).
Gas4Sea, it said, is a partnership created to jointly promote LNG as the cleaner maritime fuel by providing LNG bunkering services in the global market.
“Under the terms of the MoU, the parties will explore ways to collaborate and identify potential business opportunities in relation to LNG bunkering,” the statement read.
The MoU was signed by PLL chief marketing officer and chief executive officer Ezhar Yazid Jaafar, and MISC vice president of LNG business unit Faizul Ismail.
Gas4Sea partners were represented by Mitsubishi general manager of LNG bunkering business office Yuji Toshima, ENGIE senior vice president of business development Asia Denis Bonhomme, and NYK manager of fuel project team Takahiro Nito.
Ezhar said the collaboration is expected to enhance Petronas’ strong presence in the integrated LNG value chain and diversified LNG market portfolio.
“Petronas is looking at ways to further promote the consumption of LNG beyond the existing markets portfolios, and advocating LNG as marine fuel is a new frontier for the LNG sector,” said Ezhar.
“In addition, this collaboration will also support the usage of LNG as a fuel of choice for maritime activities, which is in line with Petronas’ effort in helping the industry reduce its carbon footprint,” he added.
According to Petronas, Gas4Sea partners are major players in the energy and global shipping industries. “With their world’s first purpose built LNG bunkering vessel based in the port of Zeebrugge in Belgium, they are equipped with a key piece of the LNG bunkering value chain to extend the reach of LNG to fuel the marine transportation sector.”
Petronas, meanwhile, noted it has diversified its LNG supply portfolio in recent years with the addition of Australia Gladstone LNG and Petronas’s first floating LNG facility in offshore Sarawak.
SOURCE: THE EDGE MARKETS
KUALA LUMPUR: Petronas, via its unit Petronas LNG Ltd (PLL) and shipping affiliate MISC Bhd, has inked a non-binding deal with Gas4Sea partners to explore potential collaboration in promoting liquefied natural gas (LNG) as the preferred marine fuel.
Petronas, which also stands for Petroliam Nasional Bhd, said in a statement today the Gas4Sea partners are ENGIE S.A., Mitsubishi Corp and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK). The non-binding memorandum of understanding was inked last Tuesday (May 9).
Gas4Sea, it said, is a partnership created to jointly promote LNG as the cleaner maritime fuel by providing LNG bunkering services in the global market.
“Under the terms of the MoU, the parties will explore ways to collaborate and identify potential business opportunities in relation to LNG bunkering,” the statement read.
The MoU was signed by PLL chief marketing officer and chief executive officer Ezhar Yazid Jaafar, and MISC vice president of LNG business unit Faizul Ismail.
Gas4Sea partners were represented by Mitsubishi general manager of LNG bunkering business office Yuji Toshima, ENGIE senior vice president of business development Asia Denis Bonhomme, and NYK manager of fuel project team Takahiro Nito.
Ezhar said the collaboration is expected to enhance Petronas’ strong presence in the integrated LNG value chain and diversified LNG market portfolio.
“Petronas is looking at ways to further promote the consumption of LNG beyond the existing markets portfolios, and advocating LNG as marine fuel is a new frontier for the LNG sector,” said Ezhar.
“In addition, this collaboration will also support the usage of LNG as a fuel of choice for maritime activities, which is in line with Petronas’ effort in helping the industry reduce its carbon footprint,” he added.
According to Petronas, Gas4Sea partners are major players in the energy and global shipping industries. “With their world’s first purpose built LNG bunkering vessel based in the port of Zeebrugge in Belgium, they are equipped with a key piece of the LNG bunkering value chain to extend the reach of LNG to fuel the marine transportation sector.”
Petronas, meanwhile, noted it has diversified its LNG supply portfolio in recent years with the addition of Australia Gladstone LNG and Petronas’s first floating LNG facility in offshore Sarawak.
SOURCE: THE EDGE MARKETS

Linde group may invest RM2 bln in Malaysia

Posted on : 16-05-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National Business

BANTING– Linde Malaysia Sdn Bhd, a unit of German-based Linde Group, may invest about RM2 billion in Malaysia under the company’s proposed five-year plan, said its Asia Pacific Chief Operating Officer, Sanjiv Lamba.
“We aspire to invest even more and might reach the RM2 billion mark, if the opportunity presents themselves as our investments are linked to the investments of our customers. As our customers put investments on the ground, we will invest to support their growth,” he told reporters at the launch of the company’s plant here today.
“It (the investments) will depend on us securing customers projects in the country with the national oil and gas company, Petronas and some large chemical companies,” he said.
Lamba said as the market leader in Malaysia with a 50-year presence in the country, Linde had an established track record of continued investments and of bringing the latest technology to Malaysia.
“In the past two years alone, Linde had invested over RM1 billion to further strengthen our leadership in the industrial gas industry and to support our customers in their growth plans, while delivering sustainable and profitable growth for our shareholders,” he said.
“We have solid plans for Linde Malaysia…across Malaysia we are continuing to invest in electronics supporting areas such as Kulim in the north. We are in the process of signing new contracts with a large electronics company, which is progressing with its information and communications technology growth agenda and we see that as a growth opportunity.
“We see chemicals and refining as agents of growth. We are working with Petronas and its subsidiaries, and we are also pleased that we have recently started a new plant in Gebeng for one of the largest German chemical companies in the world,” said Lamba.
He said Linde had also recently signed with Arkema, a leading specialty chemicals and advanced materials company headquartered in Colombes, near Paris, France, for a plant expansion in Kerteh, Terengganu.
Lamba said the expansion plans of its customers in Malaysia would drive Linde Malaysia and it would ensure these projects materialise.
Meanwhile, the company’s automated cylinder filling plant launch in Banting was officiated by Second Minister of International Trade and Industry, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan.
The RM54 million state-of-the art facility incorporates the latest in cylinder filling technology and innovation, industry leading safety features and environment-friendly best practices.
With a maximum filling capacity of 5,800 cylinders per day and two million cylinders per year, the plant is the first modular automated cylinder filling plant in Malaysia and Linde Group’s first in the South Asia and ASEAN region.
Lamba said this latest key milestone reaffirmed Linde’s position as a long-term investor in Malaysia and as the leading industrial air and medical gases supplier.
The modular design of the cylinder filling plant allowed for expansion of capacity to meet the future needs of the market, he said, adding that the plant was fully commissioned in the first quarter of 2017.
“We aspire to achieve 200 million euros (in sales) per annum with a growth rate of 4-5 per cent annually. And with our investments in the Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex, there will be a huge addition of 30 per cent growth,” he said.
Commenting on Malaysia’s selection for the plant location, Lamba said Malaysia had a much more mature customer base market compared to other Asian neighbours.
“That is a good proposition to set up the plant here to serve high maturity customers, but also as a Centre of Excellence so that we can take the technology we develop to other parts of ASEAN,” he said, adding Linde had a presence in 17 countries in Asia Pacific and Malaysia was among its top four investment countries in Asia.
SOURCE– BERNAMA
BANTING– Linde Malaysia Sdn Bhd, a unit of German-based Linde Group, may invest about RM2 billion in Malaysia under the company’s proposed five-year plan, said its Asia Pacific Chief Operating Officer, Sanjiv Lamba.
“We aspire to invest even more and might reach the RM2 billion mark, if the opportunity presents themselves as our investments are linked to the investments of our customers. As our customers put investments on the ground, we will invest to support their growth,” he told reporters at the launch of the company’s plant here today.
“It (the investments) will depend on us securing customers projects in the country with the national oil and gas company, Petronas and some large chemical companies,” he said.
Lamba said as the market leader in Malaysia with a 50-year presence in the country, Linde had an established track record of continued investments and of bringing the latest technology to Malaysia.
“In the past two years alone, Linde had invested over RM1 billion to further strengthen our leadership in the industrial gas industry and to support our customers in their growth plans, while delivering sustainable and profitable growth for our shareholders,” he said.
“We have solid plans for Linde Malaysia…across Malaysia we are continuing to invest in electronics supporting areas such as Kulim in the north. We are in the process of signing new contracts with a large electronics company, which is progressing with its information and communications technology growth agenda and we see that as a growth opportunity.
“We see chemicals and refining as agents of growth. We are working with Petronas and its subsidiaries, and we are also pleased that we have recently started a new plant in Gebeng for one of the largest German chemical companies in the world,” said Lamba.
He said Linde had also recently signed with Arkema, a leading specialty chemicals and advanced materials company headquartered in Colombes, near Paris, France, for a plant expansion in Kerteh, Terengganu.
Lamba said the expansion plans of its customers in Malaysia would drive Linde Malaysia and it would ensure these projects materialise.
Meanwhile, the company’s automated cylinder filling plant launch in Banting was officiated by Second Minister of International Trade and Industry, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan.
The RM54 million state-of-the art facility incorporates the latest in cylinder filling technology and innovation, industry leading safety features and environment-friendly best practices.
With a maximum filling capacity of 5,800 cylinders per day and two million cylinders per year, the plant is the first modular automated cylinder filling plant in Malaysia and Linde Group’s first in the South Asia and ASEAN region.
Lamba said this latest key milestone reaffirmed Linde’s position as a long-term investor in Malaysia and as the leading industrial air and medical gases supplier.
The modular design of the cylinder filling plant allowed for expansion of capacity to meet the future needs of the market, he said, adding that the plant was fully commissioned in the first quarter of 2017.
“We aspire to achieve 200 million euros (in sales) per annum with a growth rate of 4-5 per cent annually. And with our investments in the Pengerang Integrated Petroleum Complex, there will be a huge addition of 30 per cent growth,” he said.
Commenting on Malaysia’s selection for the plant location, Lamba said Malaysia had a much more mature customer base market compared to other Asian neighbours.
“That is a good proposition to set up the plant here to serve high maturity customers, but also as a Centre of Excellence so that we can take the technology we develop to other parts of ASEAN,” he said, adding Linde had a presence in 17 countries in Asia Pacific and Malaysia was among its top four investment countries in Asia.
SOURCE– BERNAMA

Najib confident Malaysia will receive enormous benefit from OBOR (China’s One Belt One Road) initiative

Posted on : 16-05-2017 | By : sabah today | In : National

KUALA LUMPUR— Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has repeated his confidence that Malaysia will receive enormous benefit from China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative.
He said this was due to the existence of interconnection, especially between China and Central Asia, China and Europe, China and Southeast Asia, as well as between China and East Africa.
“Just imagine (the benefit of) the Belt and Road network, which is a large-scale and comprehensive. It will definitely give a boost to the development of various sectors and industries, hence generate bigger growth through good infrastructure as the catalyst,” he said in his latest blog post at www.najibrazak.com here today.
Najib said through the initiative, transportation and movement of goods would be much easier and cheaper and would also enable local entrepreneurs to penetrate a larger market.
“Insya-Allah (God willing), with the concept of shared prosperity and win-win situation, I believe Malaysia, as well as other countries, will be able to realise its potential under the ​​One Belt, One Road initiative,” he said.
OBOR initiative was mooted by President Xi Jinping of China as a development strategy that focuses on connectivity and cooperation among countries. It is also to boost trade between the countries by providing infrastructure such as ports, railways and expressways.
In the blog posting, Najib also summed up the success of his five-day visit to China, which began last Friday, including the signing of nine Business-to-Business Memoranda of Understanding in various sectors, including construction, agriculture, financial market, infrastructure and investment cooperation worth US$22.7 billion or approximately RM31.26 billion.
He said most of the projects would be implemented in Malaysia, including the Robotic Future City on a 1,000 acres (404.6ha) site in Johor Baru, which involves an investment of more than RM15 billion and would include a holistic development in terms of research and development, manufacturing, education, services, and exhibition centre.
“Sabah and Sarawak have also benefited from this visit. In Sarawak, a joint-venture factory producing methanol and derivatives between Sarawak Bumiputera Property Foundation, Consortium of Huanhqiu Contracting & Engineering Co and MACFEAM Sdn Bhd will be built at a cost of RM2 billion and is estimated to be completed in 2021.
“In Sabah, a cooperation agreement to develop The Shore worth US$132.58 million has also been signed,” he said.
Najib said the AirAsia had also become the first low-cost carrier outside China which had been granted a licence to operate in the republic with an investment of US$100 million.
He said Prime Minister Li Keqiang had given assurance that the China’s government would continue supporting Chinese companies to invest in Malaysia.
“Foreign investments such as this will certainly help our people as it would create higher-income and highly-skilled job opportunities.This is in line with our aspiration become a high income nation by 2020,” he said.
In terms of bilateral relations, Najib said President Xi had said that the Malaysia-China relation was currently at its best in history and that he appreciated Malaysia’s support for the OBOR initiative.
Malaysia has also benefited directly from it, such as in the financing of the construction of the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) by the Exim Bank of China, he said.
“I also noted that China has increased its palm oil purchase from Malaysia upon my request during the visit last November. The government expects palm oil exports to China will rise much higher with the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd and Sinograin Oils Corp.
“This agreement will also provide access to midstream and downstream markets in China. I believe that more Malaysian companies will receive the benefits of the good relations between Malaysia and China’s top leadership,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the development of the Digital Free Trade Zone was also very encouraging with the signing of the MoU between Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation, Hangzhou Municipal Government and Alibaba (China) Company Limited.
Najib said he was confident that Malaysia would be able to develop the e-commerce industry through the initiative in which Malaysia would become the hub of digital economy in Southeast Asia with an estimated double-digit growth, while Hangzhou to become the hub in China, which is a good news for operators of small- and medium-scale entrepreneurs in the country.
SOURCE— BERNAMA
KUALA LUMPUR— Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has repeated his confidence that Malaysia will receive enormous benefit from China’s One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative.
He said this was due to the existence of interconnection, especially between China and Central Asia, China and Europe, China and Southeast Asia, as well as between China and East Africa.
“Just imagine (the benefit of) the Belt and Road network, which is a large-scale and comprehensive. It will definitely give a boost to the development of various sectors and industries, hence generate bigger growth through good infrastructure as the catalyst,” he said in his latest blog post at www.najibrazak.com here today.
Najib said through the initiative, transportation and movement of goods would be much easier and cheaper and would also enable local entrepreneurs to penetrate a larger market.
“Insya-Allah (God willing), with the concept of shared prosperity and win-win situation, I believe Malaysia, as well as other countries, will be able to realise its potential under the ​​One Belt, One Road initiative,” he said.
OBOR initiative was mooted by President Xi Jinping of China as a development strategy that focuses on connectivity and cooperation among countries. It is also to boost trade between the countries by providing infrastructure such as ports, railways and expressways.
In the blog posting, Najib also summed up the success of his five-day visit to China, which began last Friday, including the signing of nine Business-to-Business Memoranda of Understanding in various sectors, including construction, agriculture, financial market, infrastructure and investment cooperation worth US$22.7 billion or approximately RM31.26 billion.
He said most of the projects would be implemented in Malaysia, including the Robotic Future City on a 1,000 acres (404.6ha) site in Johor Baru, which involves an investment of more than RM15 billion and would include a holistic development in terms of research and development, manufacturing, education, services, and exhibition centre.
“Sabah and Sarawak have also benefited from this visit. In Sarawak, a joint-venture factory producing methanol and derivatives between Sarawak Bumiputera Property Foundation, Consortium of Huanhqiu Contracting & Engineering Co and MACFEAM Sdn Bhd will be built at a cost of RM2 billion and is estimated to be completed in 2021.
“In Sabah, a cooperation agreement to develop The Shore worth US$132.58 million has also been signed,” he said.
Najib said the AirAsia had also become the first low-cost carrier outside China which had been granted a licence to operate in the republic with an investment of US$100 million.
He said Prime Minister Li Keqiang had given assurance that the China’s government would continue supporting Chinese companies to invest in Malaysia.
“Foreign investments such as this will certainly help our people as it would create higher-income and highly-skilled job opportunities.This is in line with our aspiration become a high income nation by 2020,” he said.
In terms of bilateral relations, Najib said President Xi had said that the Malaysia-China relation was currently at its best in history and that he appreciated Malaysia’s support for the OBOR initiative.
Malaysia has also benefited directly from it, such as in the financing of the construction of the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) by the Exim Bank of China, he said.
“I also noted that China has increased its palm oil purchase from Malaysia upon my request during the visit last November. The government expects palm oil exports to China will rise much higher with the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Felda Global Ventures Holdings Bhd and Sinograin Oils Corp.
“This agreement will also provide access to midstream and downstream markets in China. I believe that more Malaysian companies will receive the benefits of the good relations between Malaysia and China’s top leadership,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the development of the Digital Free Trade Zone was also very encouraging with the signing of the MoU between Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation, Hangzhou Municipal Government and Alibaba (China) Company Limited.
Najib said he was confident that Malaysia would be able to develop the e-commerce industry through the initiative in which Malaysia would become the hub of digital economy in Southeast Asia with an estimated double-digit growth, while Hangzhou to become the hub in China, which is a good news for operators of small- and medium-scale entrepreneurs in the country.
SOURCE— BERNAMA