Samalaju to be SEA’s biggest phosphate-chemical hub


KUCHING: Samalaju Industrial Park in Bintulu is set to become the largest phosphate-chemical hub in South East Asia after a power purchase agreement (PPA) was formalised between Sarawak Energy Bhd and Malaysian Phosphate Additives (Sarawak) Sdn Bhd.

The agreement is for the supply of 150MW of power for the Malaysian Phosphate Additives (Sarawak) integrated phosphate complex, the first of its kind in the region. The complex, scheduled to come online by 2018, will house nine different plants to produce food phosphate, fertiliser phosphate and Halal feed phosphate with a production capacity of 500,000 tonnes of phosphate additives, 100,000 tonnes of ammonia and 900,000 tonnes of coke per year.

“The PPA signing between Sarawak Energy and MPA Sarawak signifies our commitment towards a major investment of RM1.9 billion in the development of our phosphate additives plant at Samalaju Industrial Park. The PPA is a ‘take-or-pay’ commitment and therefore, there is no turning-back for MPA Sarawak.

“However, this is a commitment that we are delighted to make because of the huge potential contribution this project will bring to Malaysia and Sarawak in terms of Gross National Income and employment. It has enormous downstream potential and has the scalability to be the largest phosphate-chemical hub in the region,” said MPA Sarawak chairman Datuk Syed Ahmad Alwee Alsree in his speech at the PPA signing ceremony at Hilton Hotel here yesterday.

Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem was present to officiate at the event. Signing for SEB, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Syarikat Sesco Bhd, was chief executive officer Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit while general manager for Legal, Stephanie Gae Chin, acted as witness. Representing MPA Sarawak was the managing director Lim Lee Wan, witnessed by its director Dato Isaac Lugun.

Ahmad Alwee added that the project, apart from strengthening the country’s food security, would generate, from 2017-2030, a gross national income contribution of RM11.8 billion to the Malaysian economy.

“This project has a huge downstream potential and will be able to spawn a cluster of no less than 20 different downstream industries for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) ranging from factories for producing animal feed, detergents (soap and toothpastes), dry powder for fire extinguishers, fire proof doors, cleaning agent for Liquid Crystal Displays (LCD) and wafers. The creativity in the list is endless,” he continued, adding that the monumental development worth RM1.9 billion was expected to generate some 1,200 direct employment opportunities in various positions.

The shareholders of MPA Sarawak are the Malaysian Phosphate Additives Sdn Bhd through Malaysian Phosphate Ventures Sdn Bhd, Cahya Mata Sarawak through Samalaju Industries Sdn Bhd and Arif Enigma Sdn Bhd, an associate of Tradewinds Plantations Group of Companies.

“We are humbled and honoured to find ourselves in a position to invest in such a project that potentially would have a significant impact on the economies of our beloved state of Sarawak and the country. Participation by local Malaysian and Sarawakian companies must be encouraged and continued to be supported by the state and federal governments to stem the outflow of the full benefits of Sarawak’s competitively priced hydro resource,” he said.