New roads and better basic amenities planned for Sabah and Sarawak

  • Nation
  • Friday, 11 Jun 2010

SABAH and Sarawak will get more new roads and basic amenities under the 10th Malaysia Plan.

Under the five-year blueprint, a total of 2,540km of roads will be built in Sabah and 2,819km in Sarawak.

“This will help ensure mobility of goods and people from rural areas to urban markets and beyond,” said the 10th Plan report.

Also, 98% of those in Sabah and 95% of people in Sarawak will have access to clean water with supply reaching an additional 112,700 houses in Sabah and 87,000 houses in Sarawak.

The states will also enjoy 99% electricity coverage with supply in the rural areas to be extended to 59,000 houses in Sabah and 76,000 houses in Sarawak by 2015.

In Sabah, three new power plants will be commissioned with a combined capacity of 700MW. Two are gas-based plants in the west coast and one coal-based in the east coast using clean coal technology.

In Sarawak, the 2,400 MW Bakun hydroelectricity project will be commissioned in stages.

Air and water transportation will also be improved to increase connectivity and accessibility in rural areas and this includes upgrading the short take off landing (STOL) airstrips.

River transportation will be enhanced as a mode of public transport particularly in Sarawak and promoted as a tourism product.

The Government will also review the possibility of expanding the scope of the newly-established Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) to the two states pending its implementation in the peninsula.

With the Government’s focus on helping the bottom 40% of households throughout the country, bumiputra in Sabah and Sarawak will be eligible for support and resources.

Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman said the state had much to gain under the 10th Plan, saying he was heartened that it made provisions for 2,540km of road that would improve the people’s connectivity.

“This will ensure the people in all corners of the state enjoy the fruits of development,” Musa said.

Miri MP Datuk Peter Chin said the planned projects for Sarawak were good, lauding the announcement for the construction of schools near longhouse.

He also said the investment of two aluminium smelters in Sarawak worth RM18bil would be the catalyst for development in areas in the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE).

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