Young leaders key to realising Sabah's development goals, says CM

Hajiji mingling with participants of the Sybil engagement in Kota Kinabalu on Wednesday (Jan 17).

KOTA KINABALU: Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor wants young business and industry leaders in Sabah to become government partners and assist in realising the state’s development agendas.

"There is still much more to do for Sabah and I want you, as members of the Sabah Young Business and Industry Leaders (Sybil) to be our partners in progress to realise our development agenda for the benefit of Sabah and her people," the Chief Minister said at Menara Kinabalu here on Wednesday (Jan 17).

Speaking in an impromptu appearance at the Sybil engagement with the Sabah Economic Advisory Council (SEAC), he said he was glad to see the enthusiasm reflected by the attendance of the 100-strong participants including young leaders of established businesses in Sabah.

"I am heartened to see such enthusiasm and I applaud SEAC’s initiative to kick start and provide a voice to the young people from business and industry," he added.

Hajiji said that since taking over as Chief Minister in September 2020, the state government did not waste time restructuring Sabah’s economy.

"We have set a bold target to develop Sabah over a five-year period from 2021 as reflected in our Hala Tuju Sabah Maju Jaya (SMJ) development plan.

"To date, we have recorded more than RM12bil in investments across 90 projects, promising to generate thousands of job opportunities.

"Last week, I announced the RM20bil green steel project of which phase one of the project will commence at the end of this year and be completed in 2026, promising 2,795 job opportunities during its operational phase.

"Our investor-friendly policies have made Sabah conducive to investments, and we are expecting more investments in the near future," Hajiji said.

The Chief Minister said he was positioning these investments as the solid foundation for young Sabahans to build their future.

Meanwhile, Sybil chairman James Wong said the programme was an initiative to assist SEAC in formulating a policy to develop young economic leadership in the state.

"We (Sybil) help to mobilise about 100 young business and industry leaders from Sandakan, Tawau, and even Kuala Lumpur, coming specifically for the event.

"At the event, we had an engagement to see where young industry professionals can add value, support and partner up with the government to help solve real problem of the day," he said.

He said the programme was purely solution-based and a platform for the young business leaders to brainstorm ways to build a stronger and vibrant future economy for Sabah.

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