KUALA LUMPUR: The Finance Ministry has made a preliminary objection against Maju Holdings Sdn Bhd's takeover of PLUS Malaysia Bhd, after taking consideration the views of main shareholders Khazanah Nasional Bhd and Employees Provident Fund (EPF).
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said the two main shareholders of PLUS Malaysia Bhd had expressed their objection, but did not reveal the reason behind it.
"We made a preliminary decision based on all the recommendations by EPF and Khazanah," he told reporters at the Parliament lobby on Thursday (July 11).
Lim said this was the position taken by the Ministry but he added that, "it will of course be based on the Prime Minister's decision."
However, he also noted that he would be meeting with representatives from Maju Holdings over a new proposal.
It was reported that Maju Holdings group executive chairman, Tan Sri Abu Sahid Mohamed had put in an RM36bil bid to take over PLUS in 2017.
According to business daily The Edge, Maju Holdings is proposing a 25% reduction in toll rates to get a 10-year extension or a 30% toll reduction if the concession is extended for 15 years, until 2053.
Alternatively, it offers a 33% toll reduction if the concession is extended for 20 years, or a 36% toll reduction for a 30-year extension until 2068.
On a separate matter, Lim said that he would table a report to the Prime Minister and the Cabinet on the issuance of Panda bonds.
"Let me brief them first before making any announcements," he said.
It was reported that several Chinese banks had expressed interest in issuing Panda bonds to help Malaysia out of its financial woes.
Panda bonds are renminbi-denominated bonds from non-Chinese issuers and sold in China.