Abang Johari stresses a point during his speech. – Ukas photo

KUCHING (Sept 18): Sarawak will be the first state to receive the Approved Permit (AP) incentive from the federal government to import hydrogen-powered and electric vehicles (EVs), said Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

He said the APs would allow the state to import 1,000 units of EVs and hydrogen-powered vehicles.

“This is the first incentive that they are giving, and they are giving this to Sarawak first.

“With this APs, it will enable us to promote EVs and hydrogen-powered vehicles in the state,” he said at the Bintulu Additional Gas Facility – 2 (BAGSF-2) First Gas Readiness Ceremony in Bintulu today.

He said this was relayed to him during a meeting with the federal Cabinet two days ago.

“They have also agreed to give tax exemption for EVs and hydrogen-powered vehicles,” he added.

In his speech, Abang Johari said during the meeting, he also briefed the federal Cabinet on the direction the Sarawak government is taking in terms of energy.

“I briefed the Prime Minister that we must manage prudently and at the same time, try to explore new technology for us to produce energy not only for Sarawak but also our neighbours.

“The Prime Minister has acknowledged this and therefore I would like to urge Petronas, Petros and other entities to explore higher products out of gas,” he said.

The Premier said Sarawak has positioned itself in Indonesia where the state is currently exporting energy to Kalimantan, as well as investing in Indonesia’s largest hydroelectric dam in North Kalimantan.

“We are also going to develop our cascading hydro dam, which has the potential to generate 20,000MW and will be environmentally friendly.

“We are also embarking on producing green and blue ammonia for us to produce hydrogen, which is very significant against this background of climate change,” he said.

Abang Johari said he has briefed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and the federal Cabinet on the state’s intention with the availability of these feedstock sources.

“We want Sarawak to contribute to the whole region so that we can become the Asean energy hub.

“That is our intention and I think in the long run, we will be able to add value to our resources available here,” he said.

On another matter, Abang Johari said Sarawak’s collaboration with Petronas is doing quite well based on their commercial settlement agreement (CSA).

“We are like sibling and as siblings, we must share. I think we can further collaborate in downstream activities,” he said.

He added the state should not rely on LNG (liquefied natural gas) alone.

“It is the intention of the Sarawak government that while we don’t abandon LNG, we must also explore the possibilities of other downstream products out of our gas,” he said.

Among those present were Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan; Food Industry, Commodity and Regional Development Minister Dato Sri Dr Stephen Rundi Utom; Minister in the Premier of Sarawak’s Department Datuk John Sikie Tayai; Deputy Minister of Energy and Environmental Sustainability Dr Hazland Abang Hipni; Sarawak Petchem chairman Tan Sri Datuk Amar Abdul Aziz Husain; Satok assemblyman Dato Ibrahim Baki, who is also Petronas non-independent non-executive director; and Malaysia Petroleum Management senior vice president Mohamed Firouz Asnan.