Big plans to spur growth

in Perak’s southern region

THE RM1bil allocated for the Regional Corridor Authorities has indeed reaffirmed the importance of regional development in Malaysia’s economic development agenda, said Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA) chief executive officer Datuk Redza Rafiq.

Redza added that the initiatives announced in the Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER) were a clear indication of the momentum that had been created under the NCER Blueprint 2.0.

“Following the Federal Government’s decision to include the whole of Perak into NCER in 2016, the NCIA has supported the Perak government’s initiative to develop Southern Perak Region (Wilayah Perak Selatan or WPS) to form a new growth area for NCER in southern Perak.

“To this end, NCIA is excited at the prospects of leveraging on the strengths of the southern region of the state.

“Plans have been drawn up to implement the WPS. The Budget announcement on the three initiatives in WPS is a clear indication of the importance placed by the Government in developing the southernmost area of the NCER.

“NCIA looks forward to implement these new initiatives as part of its Growth Node strategy,” he said in the statement.

Along with the recently announced Special Tax Incentives for the NCER, Redza said NCIA was pleased that infrastructure and connectivity continue to be the nation’s priority in Budget 2018.

“The announcement on the upgrading of the Langkawi and Penang airports and the enhanced connectivity between Banting and Taiping will serve to take things to the next level in the NCER.

“The Bukit Kayu Hitam Special Border Economic Zone (SBEZ) in Bukit Kayu Hitam shall complement the various infrastructure and connectivity, as well as border trade initiatives in NCER.

“This catalytic development will transform Bukit Kayu Hitam into a regional centre for logistics and trading; and create a new economic growth centre in NCER,” he added.

The establishment of the SBEZ, he said, would serve to catalyse the participation of both local and foreign investors and would create a new economic catalyst in the border area, providing job and business opportunities that leveraged on the logistics throughput.

“The announcements made in the areas of agriculture and tourism, including the much-awaited declaration of Pangkor as a tax-free island, have given the respective sectors much cause for excitement.

“This is in line with NCER’s initiatives in modernising the agriculture sector, as well as developing and promoting NCER as a top tourist destination, to support the Visit Malaysia Year in 2020 as announced in the Budget.

“The manufacturing sector in NCER has experienced a steady growth, contributing significantly to Malaysia’s Gross Domestic Product and Foreign Direct Investment.

“To exemplify, NCER has managed to record a year-on-year growth of 83% in approved manufacturing investments in the first half of 2017,” he said.

02-11-2017 – The Star