JS-SEZ plans set to accelerate with key talks in June, says Johor exco man

JOHOR BARU: The planning of the Johor-Singapore Special Economic Zone (JS-SEZ) is expected to go into high gear this month with a series of important discussions scheduled to take place.

Johor executive councillor Lee Ting Han said the first JS-SEZ committee meeting jointly chaired by Malaysia’s Economy Ministry director-general and Singapore’s Trade and Industry permanent secretary had been held on May 30.

In the meeting, both countries agreed that the details of the JS-SEZ will be jointly discussed by the Malaysia and Singapore working groups, said Lee, who is chairman of the state’s investment, trade, consumer affairs and human resources committee.

“Following that, the first meeting between the ministers of both countries is expected to take place in mid-June. Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi is also set to attend.

“Towards the end of the month, working groups from Malaysia and Singapore will come together in a workshop to focus on the offers proposed by both sides.

“They will also discuss the details of the JS-SEZ agreement, which is expected to be signed later this year,” he said after chairing a briefing session about the special economic zone on behalf of Onn Hafiz on Thursday (June 6).

The session, which included a presentation by Economy Ministry secretary-general Datuk Nor Azmie Diron, was attended by all 56 Johor assemblymen, 10 district officers as well as 16 local council mayors and presidents, added Lee.

He said that since the memorandum of understanding to develop the special economic zone was signed between both countries on Jan 11, the Malaysian side has been proactively involving the relevant federal ministries in related discussions.

“Among the main initiatives included in the JS-SEZ, which is the usage of QR code at Johor and Singapore customs, immigration and quarantine complexes, has already been implemented.

“This reflects our political will to make the special economic zone a success,” he added.

It was reported that the Prime Ministers of both countries have agreed to finalise the full-fledged JS-SEZ agreement during the Singapore-Malaysia Leaders Retreat in September.

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