KUCHING (Dec 5): The Sarawak government’s commitment to sustainable development has gained attention from the world, says Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.
He said this is evident through favourable ratings by international rating agencies such as Standard and Poor’s and Moody’s Investor Services that concur with Sarawak’s strategy to attract more quality investments to develop Sarawak on a big scale.
“Sarawak is now focusing on promoting low carbon solutions, green and circular economy. We also aim to be a regional leader in innovation and high technology-based economy.
“With the Post Covid-19 Development Strategy (PCDS) 2030, we are promoting economic prosperity, social inclusivity and environmental sustainability,” he said after witnessing the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) yesterday between Invest Sarawak and Singapore’s Surbana Jurong Infrastructure, in conjunction with the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The text of his speech was shared by the Office of the Premier of Sarawak.
Adding on, Abang Johari said Sarawak remains as one of the most popular destinations for investment in Malaysia and the region at large.
He said the state welcomes investments and collaborations that can create mutual benefits for all, particularly in six priority sectors namely manufacturing, commercial agriculture, tourism, forestry, mining and services.
“Up until September this year, the Sarawak government has approved US$2.4 billion (RM11.3 billion) worth of investments in the manufacturing sector.
“This is credited to our business-friendly policy that has always been very supportive of investments of both foreign direct investment and domestic direct investment,” he said.
On the MoU, Abang Johari said it will cover areas of collaborations in industry transformation; energy transition and industrial decarbonisation; carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS) decarbonisation; and industrial park development and management, in hope of realising the development of low-carbon industries in Sarawak.
“This MoU is a natural progression following the completion of the master plan for the development of industrial terminals in Sarawak that Surbana Jurong did for the government of Sarawak.
“The master plan has identified challenges and opportunities for Sarawak’s industrial landscape such as green economy opportunities, and enhance and develop skillsets to equip the people of Sarawak for these new opportunities; and the implementation of a just energy transition and industrial decarbonisation projects, integrated with greenfield and brownfield industrial activities,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Premier said in order to put the state government’s commitment into real climate action, Sarawak had Nov 21 this year become the first in Malaysia to pass law on carbon emissions, namely the Environment (Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emission) Bill 2023.
He explained this Bill is designed to safeguard Sarawak’s environment by implementing concrete strategies to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases.
“It will also help to promote carbon capture and storage that will help mitigate the impact of climate change while providing a platform for Sarawakians to participate in carbon mitigation projects that will earn carbon credits for their efforts.
“All the other efforts currently in progress such as green hydrogen, micro-algae, sustainable aviation fuels (SAF) and also biomass projects in Sarawak are done all in view of a better future Sarawak and the planet,” he said.
Signing the MoU on behalf of Surbana Jurong was its managing director (Energy and Industrial) Tan Wooi Leong, while Invest Sarawak was represented by its chief executive officer Timothy Ong.
Also present at the ceremony were Deputy Premier of Sarawak Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan and senior officials from both Singapore and Sarawak.