PENAMPANG: Sabah will produce its own brand of cooking oil, with five factories expected to be established as early as this year.
Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said among the locations identified to set up the mills were Tawau, Sandakan, Lahad Datu and Keningau.
“We expect each factory to cost RM5mil.
“The name of the cooking oil brand will be announced later. For starters, five factories, but we have to keep track if there is increasing demand.
"Hopefully we can start this year,” he told reporters after attending the Community Development Leader Unit (UPPM) Raya open house at Donggongon on Thursday (June 20).
Shafie, during his speech at the event, also hinted about a furniture factory to be developed in Kota Marudu district.
The state government last year announced a ban on log exports with the aspiration of developing the furniture industry in Sabah to generate job opportunities for locals.
“There is an investor from China whom I met in Shenzhen during a working visit (earlier this year); they wanted to collaborate with an existing plywood mill there (in Kota Marudu).
“I encouraged them to go forward with licensing for a furniture factory in Kota Marudu, as these investors already have a market in China.
“As we said before, Sandakan will be the centre for the furniture industry, but this does not stop furniture factories being built anywhere else in Sabah,” he told reporters afterwards, expressing hope that it would kick-off this year.
In his speech, Shafie also called for cooperation among all ethnic groups to develop the state and the country.
“Each community has its own value and function in society at large.
“If we promote shallow-mindedness, we could not live together, but if we practice respect towards one another, our children will be able to live harmoniously,” he stressed.