CM: Special incentives needed to develop oil, gas industry


KOTA KINABALU: Sabah needs special incentives to develop its oil and gas industry in Siptang, said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.

He said it was essential to enable interested local and foreign investors to invest in the industry as well as to improve the infrastructure in the area.

“Many domestic and international investors are keen to put in billions of Ringgit in investments to develop the area which needs high amount of capital to develop the infrastructure.

“The private sector is willing to come in but they want some incentives such as a lower price for gas to make it economical for them to invest,” said Musa after launching the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) open day here yesterday.

He said apart from improving the infrastructure at the 4,000 ha land in Sipitang, the investors were also keen to set up urea and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) plants, adding the state government had set up the Sipitang Oil and Gas Corporation under the Chief Minister’s Inc., for the development of the industry.

Musa said he had discussed the matter with Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Idris Jala, who is also Performance Management and Delivery Unit (PEMANDU) chief executive officer, over the matter.

Idris, who was also at the press conference, said they would discuss the matter with the federal government as well as Petronas as the idea was in line with the ETP which aims at a private sector driven economy.

“We will have to discuss this matter further and see how we can facilitate it,” he added.

According to Industrial Development Minister Datuk Raymond Tan Shu Kiah, the state government has identified the vehicle and identified a suitable land for the project which will only be for oil and gas activities.

“We are in collaboration with Petronas to work out the layout of activities in the site now, and Petronas is one of the anchor players.

“Many domestic and foreign investors have indicated their preparedness to invest. That is why private initiatives are coming to invest and are even prepared to go into infrastructure as well.

“Petronas has also been asked to do a project proposal as  the oil and gas activities have to be in Sabah. They are in great urgency that we get the activities moving on the ground, especially in Sipitang.

“The landing and processing of the gas will be done in (Sabah Oil and Gas Terminal) Kimanis,” said Tan.