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Study on untreated water for factories: Phoong
Published on: Friday, May 26, 2023
By: Jonathan Nicholas
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Study on untreated water for factories: Phoong
Phoong (middle) with Mide Permanent Secretary Datuk Thomas Logijin (left) and Assistant Minister Datuk Andi Muhammad Suryady (right).
Kota Kinabalu: Findings of a feasibility study on using untreated clean water for industrial supply to ease Sabah’s water crisis will be revealed this year.

Sabah Industrial Development and Entrepreneurship Minister (Mide) Phoong Jin Zhe said currently, water supply used by investors (factories) and domestic users are of the same source.

“Most factories require only clean but untreated water. If realised, then implementation is expected improve water supply to domestic users in the Kota Kinabalu, Lahad Datu and Sipitang,” said the Luyang Assemblyman.

The study on non-portable water is being carried out by Jetama Sdn Bhd and was approved by Cabinet on Nov 22 last year.

Meanwhile, he said the momentum of receiving investors to Sabah is expected to increase with the State Government’s efforts.

He said several high potential sectors have been identified in collaboration with the Ministry of Investment, Malaysian Trade and Industry (Miti).

They are namely green technology, resource-based downstream industries, renewable energy and low energy intensity industries. 

“Mide will continue to work closely with the Entrepreneur Development and Cooperative Ministry (Kuskop) under the leadership of Datuk Ewon Benedick, in developing entrepreneurs and small traders in Sabah.

“Due to the State Government’s concern for SME entrepreneurs the total allocation for the SME-Up Programme (BAIKS) has been increased to RM15 Million this year.

“My Ministry through the Department of Industrial Development and Research (DIDR) can help in getting MeSTI and Halal Certifications, machine and equipment assistance, packaging quality improvement and business digitisation,” he said in his winding up speech on Wednesday. 

Responding to Moyog’s Datuk Darell Leiking who asked how many investors have left or ended investments in Sabah, Phoong said there was none.

“In fact, the State Government has succeeded in attracting high-impact foreign direct investment (FDI), namely the South Korean SK Nexilis Malaysia Sdn Bhd during the Covid-19 pandemic in addition to Chinese Kibing and Singaporean Esteel Enterprise Sabah Sdn Bhd,” he said. 

Phoong said more than half of the 4,352 job opportunities created are being filled by locals. 

Sk Nexilis in KKIP (RM4.28b), Kibing’s (RM2.48b) solar glass factory also in KKIP and their silica extraction and processing plant in Kudat are expected to be completed this year.

The biggest, Esteel in Sipitang (RM19.8b), is expected to complete by the end of 2026.

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