KUCHING: The Sarawak government aims to consolidate the four ports under the state’s jurisdiction in order to meet today’s demands when it comes to such facilities, said Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg.
He said to do so, the state would have to re-look its Port Authorities Ordinance, but stressed that the four ports in the state – Kuching Port, Tanjong Manis Port, Miri Port and Rajang Port – needed to be upgraded and equipped with modern technology.
“What I’m saying is we are consolidating Sarawak’s ports. That means there are areas that we have to upgrade in order to meet the demands of the modern port. (This is) because now people go for containerisation and modern managing of ports. So we have to look at ours,” he told reporters after launching Sarawak Export Day 2019, here yesterday.
On the estimated cost of upgrade, Abang Johari said it would depend on various factors.
“Maybe we have to upgrade certain facilities, for instance, the management of port mobility is computerised. In other words, you have to engage computerisation management,” he added.
Containerisation is a system of intermodal freight transport using intermodal containers. The containers have standardised dimensions, while the handling system is completely mechanised so that all handling is done with cranes and special forklift trucks.
All containers are also numbered and tracked using computerised systems.
Meanwhile, Abang Johari said the government was also looking at building a specialised industrial terminal to promote the petrochemical industry.
He said the matter was still in the planning stage, but added such terminal would have to be built near a port for safety reasons.
“There is a proposal to build a refinery, meaning that the refinery must be built near the jetty and it is for safety. That terminal has to be looked into,” he said.