JOHOR BARU: Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin has blasted former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's illogical allegations that foreigners are snapping up properties in the state.
He said between 2003 and Nov 30 this year, the number of applications by foreigners approved by the State Land and Mines Department were only for 29,218 units, which comprises landed property and strata ownership.
“The total amount of foreign ownership is only at 2.01% from the number of properties in Johor, which stands at 1.45 million units," he said in a statement here Thursday.
Dr Mahathir claimed at a Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia talk last month that 700,000 foreigners were expected to come to the country due to the various developments in Iskandar Malaysia.
Mohamed Khaled said Dr Mahathir’s allegations were off the mark.
He said in Dr Mahathir’s recent blog post, the Parti Pribumi chairman even predicted that Johor Baru would be inhabited by 1.5 million foreigners.
“It is clear that Dr Mahathir is inconsistent with his figures. This shows the allegations are ill intent and to confuse the rakyat,” said Mohamed Khaled.
He advised Dr Mahathir to get a clearer explanation from the state government.
“What we are doing in Johor is to continue the growth formula started by Dr Mahathir himself and at the same time, the state government is not selective on foreign direct investment including from China.
“China has emerged to be the second economic powerhouse in the world. Soon they will become the biggest where their citizens have invested in properties in major cities around the globe including Australia, Portugal, Paris, California, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Singapore,” he said.
Mohamed Khaled added that Dr Mahathir was "singing" the same tune with DAP on its baseless allegations over the developments taking place in Johor.
“Johor Baru must be part of the global success and it will not be failed by Dr Mahathir and his allies' political games," he said.