KUANTAN: Alliance Steel (M) Sdn Bhd has agreed to a compromise and will lower the solid portion of its perimeter wall, which people have been dubbed the "Great Wall of China in Kuantan".
Deputy International Trade and Industry Minister Dr Ong Kian Ming (pic) said the steel mill would be submitting a new plan for its wall to the Kuantan Municipal Council (MPK).
"If it is approved, half of the wall will be taken down and replaced with transparent fencing, so people from the outside can see the inside of the Alliance Steel area.
"We welcome this move," he said after attending a meeting at the Malaysia-China Kuantan Industrial Park (MCKIP) here Wednesday (Sept 5).
Dr Ong said the move showed Alliance Steel's sincerity in cooperating with the authorities, although the company did have the permission to build a wall.
"The wall is not to be demolished, but lowered according to the standards of MPK," he said.
Dr Ong said the current height of the wall was about 3m but the new plan would have the concrete part lowered to 1.8m of concrete wall and the rest topped with transparent fencing.
The wall became the subject of controversy when Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said in an interview with a news portal that he wished to see the wall at MCKIP come down literally and figuratively.
The 9.2km-long wall surrounds the steel mill's 287.3ha compound.
Also present at the meeting were Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Fuziah Salleh and Teruntum assemblyman Sim Chon Siang.
They were briefed by officials from the East Coast Economic Region Development Council, MCKIP, Kuantan Port Consortium and Alliance Steel.