Catalyst for Johor’s recovery

Construction of the Rapid Transit System Link between Johor Baru and Singapore has started, and should prove a major boost to Johor, whose economy has been hard hit by the pandemic. — NUR AISYAH MAZALAN/The Star

JOHOR BARU: Business and tourism groups are hopeful that the setting up of Johor Economic, Trade and Cultural Office (Jetco) in Singapore would allow the state to recover faster from the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Describing it as a good move, Johor Baru Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JBCCI) president Low Kueck Shin said it would pave the way for more investments into the state while promoting tourism.”I think the office in Singapore will play a pivotal role in the economic recovery of Johor after the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Apart from bringing more investors into the country and further promoting the tourism and cultural sector here, I believe Jetco will also help to foster closer ties between Singapore and Johor, ” he said.

He added that it was important for Johor and Singapore to have continued close relations, as they were dependent on each other, especially when it came to the economy.

“I believe that the setting up of Jetco is timely as it may help to speed up the recovery of the economy post Covid-19, ” he said.

Johor Baru Malay Hawkers, Traders and Small Business Entrepreneurs Association president Abdullah Md Yusof also lauded the move but urged the state and federal governments to provide more details about Jetco, which is slated to open in the first quarter of 2021.

“It is a good move, especially due to the current slowdown of the economy, and I hope the office would be successful in carrying out the tasks required.

“However, more details about Jetco should be provided by Wisma Putra and the state government so that the business community here would know how to benefit from the office, ” he said.

Abdullah added that the state government should launch an official website where the public, especially the business community, could find out about the services and assistance provided by Jetco.

Johor Indian Petty Traders and Small Businesses Association president D. Ravindran hoped Jetco would also help Malaysians stuck in the island republic.

“It is good to have an office representing Johor in Singapore but at the moment, the focus is on opening the border.

“If Jetco were to be open before the border fully reopens, it should also act as a channel for Malaysians there to get assistance, ” he said, adding that more information about the function of the office should be made available.

Malaysia Tourist Guides Council president Jimmy Leong said the setting up of Jetco was a positive move that would help boost the economy of both countries.

“In terms of promotion of the tourism sector, I believe there are already other avenues for that.

“But the office will provide visitors with a channel to ask questions for any problems they may face when travelling here, ” he said, adding that it was a good way to further enhance the tourism sector here.

The Federal Government approved the setting up of Jetco in Singapore as a way to bring in investments as well as to promote the tourism and cultural sector between Johor and the island republic.

Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Hasni Mohammad was reported saying that Jetco Singapore would promote Johor as a global investment, trade and cultural destination.

“Especially in the current economic context, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused globalisation and international trade to be severely disrupted.

“Therefore, the establishment of Jetco Singapore will break through the new economic, cultural and trade narrative post Covid-19, ” he had said.

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