Wednesday, March 22

China group to invest RM2 bln



From sixth left, Junz, Shafie, Liang, Juhar, Norlidah, Shuryani and Liew jointly cut the anniversary cakes.

KOTA KINABALU: A group of China investors have expressed their intention to pump in RM2 billion into a particular sector in Sabah.

In revealing this yesterday, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Shafie Apdal said the investment would not only create some 3,000 job opportunities for Sabahans, but many spin-off activities as well.

Shafie said he had met the group of investors from China just yesterday afternoon, adding that the State Government has received other enquiries on investments as well.

He stressed that the Parti Warisan Sabah-led government in Sabah valued cooperation with China.

“Sabah is willing to make better use of the Belt and Road Initiative to strengthen cooperation with China in various fields, such as infrastructure, agriculture, forestry, fisheries and tourism.”

Shafie said the agreements related to durian, rubber and palm oil signed during Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad’s visit to China were encouraging, and he believed Sabah could benefit from those agreements.

“At the same time, Sabah welcomes Chinese companies and businessmen to invest in Sabah, bringing more capital and technology, creating more jobs, and adding momentum to Sabah’s economic development.

“The State Government of Sabah will strive to provide a convenient and favourable investment environment.”

He said this at the National Day Reception hosted by the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Kota Kinabalu to celebrate the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China here yesterday.

The event was graced by Sabah Head of State, Tun Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Juhar bin Datuk Haji Mahiruddin and his consort Toh Puan Datuk Seri Panglima Hajah Norlidah binti Tan Sri Datuk R.M Jasni.

Shafie said, since the implementation of the reforms and opening up policy 40 years ago, China has made remarkable achievements in the fields of economy, science and technology, industry and social development.

He said, the Chinese economy has become a powerful engine for the global economic growth and tremendous contributions have been made to world development by lifting 740 million people from poverty.

“It is shown that China has chosen a suitable path for its own development, which provides reference and confidence for other developing countries around the world.”

He said Dr. Mahathir during his recent visit to China had stated that Malaysia’s Look East policy in the new period includes learning from the successful experience of China’s development, promoting innovation and creativity, as to achieve greater development for the country.

Shafie said, China has achieved tremendous development for the past 69 years and was currently on par not only with strong economies like the United States, but also way ahead compared to other economies in the world.

“One thing is for sure, not only is China able to realize technologies that benefit people in the world, but also they (the technologies) are more affordable compared to other products or devices produced by many developed countries.

Sabah is willing to strengthen cooperation and have exchanges with the Chinese local governments and various industrial sectors, to learn from China’s experience and to upgrade the speed and quality of development in Sabah.”

On another note, Shafie said that there would be increase of Chinese tourists to the magnitude of 500,000 to Sabah in spite of some incidents.

He said, Sabah was a place tourists enjoyed because of our affordable food and proximity to tourist attractions in the State.

“It is not only cheaper for tourists from China to come to Sabah, I believe they do enjoy the sight, the food and culture too.”
He said, traditional Chinese culture was well-preserved in Sabah, which was one of the uniqueness of the State.
He said the government also encourage and support the preservation of Chinese cultures by funding some of the activities and events.
“This shows how serious and committed the Malaysian government is to ensure the different ethnics, cultures and religions do not divide us and how best to unite our people.”
Shafie also said that the Chinese consulate in Kota Kinabalu played an important role and has done a lot of work in promoting China-Sabah friendship and cooperation in various fields.
“The Consul General (Liang Caide) is very diligent and very popular among the people of Sabah. The State Government of Sabah is willing to maintain communication and cooperation with the consulate to jointly promote the friendship between China and Sabah.”
He added that the State Government was willing to provide assistance to the work of the consulate, including extending assistance and facilities that the Consulate needs when providing consular protection to Chinese citizens.
Also present at the event were Deputy Chief Ministers, Christina Liew, and Datuk Jaujan Sambakong, Minister of Health and People’s Well-being Stephen Wong Tien Fatt, Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry, Junz Wong, Minister of Youth and Sports, Frankie Poon, Minister of Education and Innovation, Datuk Dr. Yusof Yacob, Deputy Speaker of the Sabah State Legislative Assembly, Datuk George Ginibun, Shafie’s spouse, Datin Seri Panglima Shuryani Shuaib, assistant ministers, Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS) president, Tan Sri Dr. T.C. Goh, Sabah United Chinese Chambers of Commerce (SUCCC) president, Tan Sri Andrew Liew Sui Fatt, former minister of Special Tasks, Datuk Seri Panglima Teo Chee Kang, and Chinese community leaders.

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