PORT KLANG: A 400ha site has been allocated in West Port for the setting up of the country’s first Free Trade Commercial Zone.
Port Klang Authority general manager Datin Paduka O.C. Phang said the Government had recently granted its approval to model the site after the Jebel Ali Free Trade Zone in Dubai.
Phang said they were working closely with the Jebel Ali Port Authority to ensure the success of the proposed free trade commercial hub.
She said the place would be operating like the Jebel Ali port which did not require investors to pay income tax to the Government.
“Investors will be allowed to take home their profits and this will make Port Klang more attractive to foreign investors,” she told a press conference here yesterday.
Phang said the development of the commercial hub would be carried out over a period of 15 years, adding that this would be done in stages.
The first phase of the hub was expected to be completed five years from now, she added.
“We need two years for planning and three more years to provide the basic infrastructure,” she said, adding that the setting up of the hub was also expected to turn Port Klang into a Regional Distribution Centre.
Phang also said that North Port, which was working closely with West Port, was looking towards expanding its areas.
She said North Port was planning to seek more land in order to increase the number of berths so that more ships could anchor there.
Earlier, Port Klang Authority chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ting Chew Peh said Port Klang had achieved remarkable growth last year by recording a total of 4.53 million TEUs in transhipment compared with 3.21 million in 2001.
He said the 20.6% growth in transhipment was expected to put Port Klang among the top 11 ports in the world.
Dr Ting attributed the success to the availability of top class facilities, infrastructure, paperless procedures and efficient application of information technology.