‘FOR­EST CITY WILL BEN­E­FIT ALL’

Malaysians, for­eign in­vestors, not only Chi­nese, will gain from de­vel­op­ment, says China en­voy

New Straits Times - - News -

CHUAH BEE KIM KULAI news@nst.com.my

THE For­est City mega project in Jo­hor will at­tract an in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity of res­i­dents, in­vestors and busi­ness­men and will not be flooded with only Chi­nese na­tion­als as claimed by cer­tain quar­ters.

China’s am­bas­sador to Malaysia, Dr Huang Huikang, said such neg­a­tive spec­u­la­tions di­verted at­ten­tion from the huge ben­e­fits that Malaysians and for­eign in­vestors would get from the unique de­vel­op­ment.

“For­est City is an iconic green de­vel­op­ment like no other. It will put Jo­hor on the in­ter­na­tional map.

“I do not deny there will be Chi­nese cit­i­zens work­ing and stay­ing here, but there will be other na­tion­al­i­ties, too.

“It’s also not pos­si­ble that it will be a ghost town,” said Huang at the end of his visit to the site of two Chi­nese in­vest­ments in Jo­hor yes­ter­day.

Since March 7, Huang had vis­ited 14 projects in seven states.

His visit to For­est City, near Ge­lang Patah and D&Y Tex­tile (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd in Se­de­nak near here, was his last two stops in the na­tion­wide tour.

Huang said de­spite China’s strin­gent con­trols on its cap­i­tal out­flow, it would not af­fect in­vest­ments in Malaysia, such as For­est City.

“China does not en­cour­age the buy­ing of a foot­ball team or a cin­ema in for­eign coun­tries. What is per­mit­ted and what is not is clear cut,” he said.

Huang said he be­lieved more com­pa­nies from China would in­vest in Malaysia due to the friend­ship and strate­gic part­ner­ships.

“Be­sides prop­erty de­vel­op­ment, we have Chi­nese in­vestors in the man­u­fac­tur­ing, so­lar tech­nol­ogy, en­ergy, petro­chem­i­cal, biotech­nol­ogy, chem­i­cal and tex­tile sec­tors.”

He urged the Malaysian govern­ment to im­prove ef­fi­ciency and make it eas­ier for for­eign tal­ents to come in, if there was not enough lo­cal tal­ent that met a project's re­quire­ments.

He said he would like to iron out is­sues with the Malaysian govern­ment, es­pe­cially on what he al­leged were “neg­a­tive at­tacks” on cer­tain Chi­nese in­vestors in Malaysia.

“We use the best and most ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy in our projects. We do not snatch the rice-bowls of the lo­cals. On the con­trary, we con­tinue to help busi­nesses and cre­ate jobs in Malaysia.

“There was a com­pany in Malaysia which was set to close down by Oc­to­ber next year, had we not come in and pro­vided em­ploy­ment for 350 staff,” he said.

Huang, who ear­lier vis­ited For­est City, said he was sat­is­fied with the mega de­vel­op­ment.

AH­MAD TAJUDDIN PIC BY ZULKARNAIN

Dr Huang Huikang (cen­tre) look­ing at tex­tile pro­duc­tion process at D&Y Tex­tile (M) Sdn Bhd in Se­de­nak, Jo­hor, yes­ter­day. With him is D&Y Tex­tile di­rec­tor, Steven Cheng (right).

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