Government to allocate RM4bil for water management in Perak, says Anwar


BAGAN SERAI: The government has approved RM4bil for the management of water in Perak, with the bulk allocated to the Kerian district and for providing treated water to Seberang Perai in Penang, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

He said the government agreed to approve the allocation, which will be implemented through the development of the Kerian Integrated Green Industrial Park (KIGIP).

He added that findings from the artificial intelligence (AI) data centre indicate the industrial park, which will be powered by solar energy, requires a lot of water.

"This water project is extremely important for a long-term solution as it will not only fulfil the needs of the park but also help with the current water woes faced by the agriculture community in Kerian and the treated water issues in Seberang Perai Selatan," he said in his speech when launching the industrial park project at Dewan Dato Zainal Abidin on Saturday (June 15).

Present were Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof, Investment, Trade and Industry Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz, Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Saarani Mohamad, and Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

Anwar said research indicates that if water is managed properly at Sungai Perak, it would not only overcome flooding issues but also ensure adequate water supply for the state.

"With proper water management, there will not only be adequate water but also excess water," he said.

In his speech, Anwar also agreed to the request of Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Saarani Mohamad for the construction of an interchange at the North-South Expressway near the industrial park project. The estimated cost for the interchange is RM60mil.

Anwar said the implementation of the interchange is an important element to support the industrial park.

"So the initial approval for the interchange must be expedited," he said.

Fadillah, who is also the Energy Transition and Water Transformation Minister, told reporters later that his job was to oversee that all infrastructure-related matters concerning the industrial park are completed as soon as possible.

He said this includes energy, water, roads, and telecommunications issues.

"The water source will be taken from Sungai Perak and channelled to Bukit water, not only for the industrial park but also for agriculture and drinking water purposes.

"Part of the water will also be channelled to Seberang Perai," he added.

He said the RM4bil allocation is for water management for the whole of Perak, with most being allocated for the Kerian district.

As for the interchange, he said the amount is expected to exceed RM60mil.

"In principle, the Prime Minister has approved RM60mil. However, depending on the design and other factors, there may be an increase," he added.

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