Thursday, August 22

Build LCCT here to attract more direct flights — Chamber

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KUCHING: Kuching Chinese General Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCGCCI) has called on the government to build a low cost carrier terminal (LCCT) here to pave the way for more direct flights.

Comparing the situation here with Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu, the chamber felt that tourism development here was way behind, citing the lack of an LCCT here as part of the reason.

“With an LCCT, more direct flights can be established and subsequently boost tourism development and ensure economic progress.

“Without such an airport, low-cost airlines will not be able to expand their routes both domestic and international,” said a resolution adopted during its annual general meeting at Wisma Chamber here yesterday.

The chamber would write to Tourism Ministry, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd and AirAsia Berhad to voice its concern. Another resolution urged the government to reduce renewal premium for industrial land as members felt it would be fair for the government to do so following the announcement to reduce renewal premium for residential and agriculture land in May last year.

“Reasonable review of the renewal rates for industrial land will help relieve the financial burden of industry players,” reasoned the resolution.

The chamber has thus resolved to send a formal request to Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, Planning and Resource Management Ministry and Land and Survey Department.

To help bridge the gap between the government and the corporate sector, a resolution requested the government to consider appointing representatives of the chamber as members of the board of various government agencies.

“This is to make sure that opinions and needs of businessmen are effectively conveyed to address different issues,” it said, adding that a letter would be delivered to Taib and state secretary Datuk Amar Mohd Morshidi Abdul Ghani.

In view of the global oil price hike, the chamber wanted the relevant authorities to ensure direct supply of natural gas in the state as a means to reduce operational costs of industry players. It pointed out that being a gas-producing state its corporate sector should get to enjoy natural gas at a reasonable price.

“Natural gas is cheaper than petrol and more importantly, it helps bring down air pollution.”