IPOH: The Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) Joint Business Council (JBC) is seeking endorsement from the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) to turn the Lumut Port into a barter trade centre.
JBC Malaysia chairman Datuk Faudzi Naim Noh said the state had requested for this in order to facilitate growing trade at the port between Malaysia and Tanjung Balai Asahan and Belawan, Sumatra, in Indonesia.
"Lumut Port is already equipped with the necessities to be turned into a barter trade centre.
"It already has cold storage facilities and a warehouse. In terms of agricultural products like fish and vegetables, business there has already begun but in small volumes," he told reporters after attending the first day of the 23rd IMT-GT JBC Meeting on Thursday.
Faudzi added that currently, barter trade was dominated by Port Klang and the Penang Port.
"The business volume from Penang Port is between RM100mil and RM150mil (US$28.6mil and US$42.9mil). It is our hope that Lumut port takes on at least 20% of the country's total volume in the barter trade business," he said.
Faudzi added that should Lumut port be successfully turned into a barter trade centre, it would be a very important business platform for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
"Furthermore, based on a 2002 study by the EPU, the barter trade system has been proven to be a very promising mode of business," he said.