Blue­print 2.0 to drive growth

Kedah im­ple­ment­ing de­vel­op­ment projects with­out ne­glect­ing its agri­cul­tural sec­tor

New Straits Times - - News -

EMBUN MA­JID ALOR STAR news@nst.com.my

THE North­ern Cor­ri­dor Eco­nomic Re­gion (NCER) De­vel­op­ment Blue­print 20162025 (Blue­print 2.0) will stim­u­late the growth of Kedah, turn­ing it into a na­tional hub for agri­cul­ture and bio-tech­nol­ogy in­dus­tries.

Blue­print 2.0 will fo­cus on two growth node projects, as well as cross-bor­der and high-im­pact projects, to turn the state into a ma­jor con­trib­u­tor to the re­gion’s econ­omy.

The North­ern Cor­ri­dor Im­ple­men­ta­tion Au­thor­ity (NCIA) chief ex­ec­u­tive Datuk Redza Rafiq said Blue­print 2.0 would use in­no­va­tion and tech­nol­ogy to trans­form the agri­cul­ture and food in­dus­tries in the state.

“In Kedah, growth node projects such as Kedah Rub­ber City (KRC) is ex­pected to con­trib­ute RM14.7 bil­lion (in 15 years) to­wards the coun­try’s gross do­mes­tic prod­uct (GDP), bring in RM9.7 bil­lion in in­vest­ments and cre­ate 14,471 jobs.

“The Kedah Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Park (KSTP) is also ex­pected to con­trib­ute RM72.7 bil­lion to­wards the GDP and cre­ate 23,244 jobs upon its com­ple­tion in 2030.

“To­gether with the Kedah gov­ern­ment, we aim to re-shape the fu­ture of the na­tion’s rice bowl into a hub of in­dus­trial ad­vance­ment and agri­cul­tural trans­for­ma­tion in Malaysia.”

He said this at the launch­ing of Blue­print 2.0, which was of­fi­ci­ated by Kedah Men­teri Be­sar Datuk Seri Ah­mad Bashah Md Ha­ni­pah re­cently.

Redza said Blue­print 2.0 took in­spi­ra­tion from the trail of suc­cess in the gov­ern­ment’s eco­nomic trans­for­ma­tion poli­cies over the years — from the New Eco­nomic Pol­icy (NEP), which pro­moted growth and eq­uity to re­duce poverty and un­em­ploy­ment, to the New Eco­nomic Model (NEM), that sought to ad­dress re­gional im­bal­ances.

He added that un­der Blue­print 2.0, NCER also aimed to use Langkawi as a launch­pad for new initiatives in the north­ern re­gion tourism hub.

Bashah said Blue­print 2.0 would help Kedah be­come in­dus­tri­alised with­out ne­glect­ing the agri­cul­ture sec­tor.

The de­vel­op­ment of two NCER growth node projects — KSTP in Bukit Kayu Hi­tam and KRC in Padang Terap — will also pro­vide am­ple work op­por­tu­ni­ties for lo­cals.

“The state gov­ern­ment wishes to steer Kedah to­wards an in­dus­tri­al­i­sa­tion state, but at the same time, we will pro­tect the agri­cul­ture in­dus­try that Kedah is known for,” he said.

PIC BY SHARUL HAFIZ ZAM

Kedah Men­teri Be­sar Datuk Seri Ah­mad Bashah Md Ha­ni­pah and North­ern Cor­ri­dor Im­ple­men­ta­tion Au­thor­ity chief ex­ec­u­tive Datuk Redza Rafiq giv­ing the thumbs up after launch­ing the North­ern Cor­ri­dor Eco­nomic Re­gion De­vel­op­ment Blue­print 2016-2025 (Blue­print 2.0) in Alor Star re­cently.

The North­ern Cor­ri­dor Eco­nomic Re­gion De­vel­op­ment Blue­print 2016-2025 aims to re-shape the fu­ture of the na­tion’s rice bowl into a hub of in­dus­trial ad­vance­ment and agri­cul­tural trans­for­ma­tion.

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