MORE jobs, better roads and more revenue for the authorities are among some of the benefits Tanjung Malim and surrounding areas are deriving from the automotive industry.
The set-up of Proton City there has seen an influx of people and mushrooming of rela-ted industries.
One obvious advantage is the higher revenue for the Tanjung Malim Municipal Council.
According to the council, a major portion of its revenue comes from the Proton manufacturing plant and Proton City which pay RM5mil in assessment annually.
The council anticipates its annual revenue will reach RM12mil when Proton’s 13 vendor factories are operatio-nal.
Tanjung Malim resident Chew Poh Thoi said the go-vernment had upgraded many roads near Proton City.
“We now have nicer roads especially the double-carriage road leading to Behrang Sta-tion,” said Chew, who is also Pe-rak MCA Wanita chief.
She said eateries had also be-nefited with the patronage of more customers.
Kong Wai Chan, 72, of Res-taurant Yik Mun which sells the famous Tanjung Malim pau, said more new customers were now patronising the restaurant.
“We see new faces every now and then,” said the worker.
The property sector is ano-ther area which has seen a boom. Residents are reaping higher rental for their premises.
Proton plant worker Mohd Yusri Mohd Yunus, 35, said the property prices within Proton City had increased tremendously.
“An apartment used to cost RM250,000 when I first moved here from Shah Alam last Feb-ruary. The same apartment can now fetch RM350,000,” he said when met outside the factory in Behrang Hulu about 7km from Tanjung Malim recently.
Development has also trickled to nearby areas like Beh-rang and Sungkai.
A good example is the Beh-rang 2020 township.
In existence since the 1990s, the township was virtually un-inhabited until Proton City was set up.
Grocer C. Jayanthi, 35, said many Proton plant workers rented houses at Behrang 2020 as rental and real estate prices in Tanjung Malim were high.
Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Tajol Rosli Gha-zali had recently said that many related industries could be set up Tanjung Malim and Tapah.
He said he had received a proposal to set up a motorcycle spare parts factory near Tan-jung Malim.
In terms of infrastructure, Tajol Rosli said the state would develop a dedicated railway and a dedicated road from Prot-on City to Port Klang if the plant could produce 250,000 cars.
He said the North-South Ex-pressway from Ipoh to Rawang would be extended to three lanes.
The Proton plant within Pro-ton City, which started ope-rations last year, was open- ed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi in February.
The RM1.8bil plant, which produces Gen.2 cars, is five times the size of Proton’s facility in Shah Alam.
Proton City, spread over 1,600ha, will become a modern integrated township worth over RM12bil upon completion by the year 2015.