GEORGE TOWN: About 15,000 job opportunities are expected to be created once the reclamation of Island A for the Penang South Reclamation (PSR) project starts, says Penang Infrastructure Corp Sdn Bhd (PIC) chief executive officer Datuk Seri Farizan Darus (pic) said.
He said the reclamation project was expected to start sometime next month or in July and most of the jobs are related to the infrastructure development work on Island A.
“The initial three years to reclaim half of the Island A (485ha) will generate about 5,000 jobs.
“The number of jobs created will gradually hit 15,000 as we move on to reclaim the other half.
“The reclamation of the whole of Island A will take about nine years.
“If the demand for the land is good, then the reclamation for the second phase will be faster.
“The total reclamation cost for the entire Island A is about RM7bil.
“We expect the creation of the three islands to generate over 300,000 jobs by 2050, ” he said.
According to Farizan, the construction activities alone will have a multiplier effect of 2.5 times.
The jobs generated in civil engineering, specialised construction activities, capital goods and professional services would benefit and contribute to the state’s GDP over time, he said.
Farizan said Penang-based companies could start tendering for jobs related to the reclamation and infrastructure work by the end of May.
SRS Consortium Sdn Bhd will spend RM4bil to reclaim half of Island A, which is scheduled for completion in 2027.
PIC is the partner of SRS Consortium, and is now in the process of forming a joint-venture company to oversee the reclamation of Island A.
SRS Consortium, comprising Gamuda Bhd, Loh Phoy Yen Holdings Sdn Bhd, and Ideal Property Development Sdn Bhd, is now negotiating with banks to finance the project.
SRS Consortium is confident of securing the financing before the end of the year.
“We are now waiting for the state Environment Department to give the green light for our Environmental Management Plan (EMP), which is to ensure that reclamation work is executed according to approved guidelines, ” he said, adding that they were expecting to get nod by the end of this month.
According to Farizan, multinational corporations in Penang have started enquiring about Island A, as about 283ha are designated for industrial use.
“We will start selling the land in the fourth year of reclamation.
“Island A is an economic game-changer for Penang with the planning of a Green Tech Park which will follow the environmental, social, governance (ESG) requirements.
“It will house the next generation electrical and electronic (E&E) players seeking to move up the value chain while achieving their respective climate change targets.
“New E&E players expanding into the region or exploring alternatives are interested in Island A, ” he said.
Farizan said the pricing of industrial land on Island A would be competitive.
“We are looking at an estimated RM180 to RM200 per sq ft price tag, ” he said.
He added that sand would be sourced 20 nautical miles from Perak shores and 30 nautical miles from Selangor shores, both in the federal waters.
“The sand used will be from locations that have obtained Environmental Impact Assessment approval, ” he said.
On the LRT, SRS Consortium project director Szeto Wai Leong said the state government was still working with the consortium on a viable financing model.
“We could bring in an operator to build, operate and transfer the project, or we could arrange for a partner to jointly work with the state government to implement and maintain the LRT.
“The state could also apply for allocation under the 12th Malaysia Plan, ” Szeto said.
The consortium will design the elevated LRT system over the next 18 months, after which tender will be called.
“Construction work for the RM9bil LRT will start in 2023, and it will take seven years to complete, ” Szeto said.