JOHOR BARU: The centre for the new Johor-Singapore Special Economic Zone (SEZ) should be located in Pasir Gudang, says Tebrau MP Jimmy Puah Wee Tse (pic).
He said that the development plan must be proportionate and should not be focused on a certain area of development.
Pasir Gudang, which is located on the eastern side of Iskandar Malaysia, already has the industry and amenities, besides still having more land that can be developed, he added.
“Our Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, recently met with his Singapore counterpart, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, to set up SEZ in Johor.
“The government has already set up Forest City as a special financial zone (SFZ), which is located on the western side of Iskandar Malaysia.
“So I hope that the government could review my suggestion of placing this new SEZ in Pasir Gudang. It already has the amenities and industries like in Tanjung Langsat, and we are also closer to the oil and gas industry in Pengerang,” he said.
He said this when met by reporters after the officiating at the Mah Sing Group Berhad (Mah Sing) M Minori Sales Gallery ceremony in Wisma Mah Sing, Taman Austin Perdana here on Sunday (Nov 19).
Puah added that the Johor Baru City Council and Pasir Gudang City Council have also been cooperative in helping the federal and state governments ease the process of doing business in Johor Baru.
“This is our focus right now – to find ways to ease business because previously, we needed about 19 agencies just to set up one factory.
“The Sedenak Tech Park in Kulai is a very good example of what we can do if we can cut the red tape,” he said, adding that Kulai was now known as a district for the data centre industry.
Puah shared that the Malaysian and Singaporean governments were expected to meet again in January next year to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the SEZ.
“We have many things coming to Johor next year, starting with the SEZ, followed by the Gemas-Johor Baru Electrified Double Track in 2025 and the Johor Baru-Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) in 2026.
“We also have the Iskandar Rapid Transit project and the upgrade of the North-South Expressway from Yong Peng to Senai from the current four lanes to six lanes,” he said, adding that the Transport Ministry is also in talks about the Kuala Lumpur and Singapore High Speed Rail (KL-SG HSR).
Iskandar Malaysia covers an area of about 2,300sq km. There are five local authorities under Iskandar Malaysia, namely the Johor Baru City Council, Iskandar Puteri City Council, Pasir Gudang City Council, Kulai Municipal Council and Pontian Municipal Council.