JOHOR BARU: Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda) is confident of achieving the RM383bil investment target by 2025, despite facing challenges and unfavourable economic situation since its inception 10 years ago.
Chief executive officer Datuk Ismail Ibrahim said while the journey for the country’s first economic growth corridor was not smooth sailing along the way, nevertheless it was able to overcome the choppy conditions.
He said Iskandar Malaysia had recorded a total of RM12.16bil in committed investments for the first quarter of 2016, adding up to RM202.45bil in cumulative committed investments from 2006 until March this year.
Of this total, 51% or RM103.50bil represent investments that have been realised.
He said Irda had set a target of achieving between RM25bil and RM30bil in new investments yearly from now until 2025.
Ismail said in order to achieve the target, all stakeholders from the public and private sectors have to work even harder and put in more efforts now to continue attracting investments into Iskandar Malaysia.
Ismail said that the Federal and Johor Governments had been pivotal in the progress and development of Iskandar Malaysia, without which it would be impossible to achieve it within a decade.
Ismail said domestic investors’ confidence in the development of the economic corridor has been unwavering, with 60% of the total cumulative committed investments, or RM121.44bil contributed by them.
The balance of RM81.01bil or 40% were contributed by foreign investors.
The top five countries with highest committed investments into Iskandar Malaysia from 2006 until March 2016, were China, Singapore, the United States, Japan and Spain.
In the promoted sectors in Iskandar Malaysia, from the RM202.45bil, the manufacturing sector received the highest investments with RM54.26bil, followed by logistics (RM6.03bil), healthcare (RM2.77bil), tourism (RM3.16bil, education (RM1.97bil), financial services (RM1.47bil) and creative (RM0.56bil).
In the supporting sectors, residential properties recorded RM40.36bil, utilities (RM12.96bil), retail properties (RM53.71bil), industrial properties (RM12.53bil), emerging technologies (RM2.85bil) and government (infrastructure) RM9.83bil.
“We believe that Irda had done its best in developing Iskandar Malaysia with the opportunities and resources that we are able to manage,” he told StarBiz recently
“However, there were times when Irda faced challenges. We took these as lessons to look for alternative ways and yet deliver the same if not better results in the future,’’ said Ismail.
He said during the first phase (2007-2010), it was about planning and building the foundation by engaging the catalyst developers as to ensure that catalytic projects would drive and boost Iskandar Malaysia’s economic development.
Ismail said in the second phase (2011-2015), Iskandar Malaysia was strengthening and generating growth in its economic and also social development with a number of its catalytic projects starting operations during the second phase.
“We have already embarked into our third phase this year with aims to sustain and innovate. We have nine more years to go towards becoming an international metropolis and we know we can do it,’’ he said.
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