Shafie And Leiking Get Credit For Record Gain

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah catapulted, for the first time ever, into the same ranks as Selangor, Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Johor – the four traditional economic powerhouses in Malaysia early this year.

It was a proud moment for the state when it emerged that it had the biggest value of investment approved in the country in the first quarter of this year, amounting to RM11.7 billion.

The recent announcement by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida) showed that Sabah is on the right track as far as attracting new investments is concerned, said
former Mida executive officer Christopher Masudal.

This proves that Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal and former International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Darell Leiking had been working very hard to create employment for Sabahans, he said.

“This is by bringing as many domestic and foreign direct investments into the state,” he said, in a statement here today.

“So imagine how it will be if Shafie becomes the Prime Minister. Obviously Sabah will become a centre of economic activity within the Bimp-Eaga region that has a population of 57 million with Sarawak enjoying the spillover.”

In a press release on July 16, Mida said Malaysia recorded a total of RM37.4 billion worth of approved investments in the manufacturing, services and primary sectors in the first quarter (Q1) of this year.

The manufacturing sector was the largest contributor to the value of approved investments in Q1, amounting to RM25.2 billion, followed by the services sector (RM11.9 billion) and the primary sector (RM0.3 billion).

These investments involved 892 projects and will create over 19,100 jobs for the country.

For approved projects by state, the five major states namely Sabah, Penang, Selangor, Johor and Kuala Lumpur, contributed RM30.0 billion (80.1 per cent) to the total approved investments for January to March this year.

Towards this end, Masudal said key behind the impressive investment record was down to Shafie and Leiking’s commitment when dealing with foreign investors.

He said there is still huge potential for Sabah to become an economic powerhouse but that the state needed the right leaders to do the job.

“While Sabah’s geographical location is perfect with an abundance of natural resources, we still need a committed chief minister or minister who will be willing to run the extra mile in assisting these foreign investors.

“I maybe wrong but I don’t think such a commitment had been displayed by any of the previous chief ministers, if there had been, then Sabah would already have become an economic powerhouse some 20 years ago.”