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Old June 15th, 2007, 04:47 AM   #41
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Interest in IDR gaining momentum, says adviser

KUALA LUMPUR: Interest in the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) is gaining momentum among foreign investors, going by the rising number of visits to the region and talks being held with potential investors.

IDR adviser Tun Musa Hitam told reporters yesterday after the AGM of British Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (BMCC), of which he is co-patron, that talks on investment opportunities were currently being held with “certain Chinese parties”.

Investors from different countries, including 200 potential investors from Singapore, had visited the site, he said, but declined to give specific names.

Musa said various investors had also expressed interest in different aspects of the IDR.

BMCC chairman Peter Wentworth said British companies had a very positive view of the IDR as well.

“It’s a very natural extension of what Singapore and Malaysia could be doing.

“And most companies, particularly those in construction, would be interested to have a part in that region,” he told a press conference later.

Two-way trade between Malaysia and Britain hit RM2.5bil this year. Wentworth believes there is still an upside to this in the near future. The country is the third largest foreign investor in Malaysia.
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Old June 15th, 2007, 11:05 AM   #42
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Everyday I hear news about investment in IDR.

I think we malaysian forumers here should invest also lah.
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Old June 15th, 2007, 11:13 AM   #43
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Quote:
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Everyday I hear news about investment in IDR.

I think we malaysian forumers here should invest also lah.
me still a student, no money.
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Old June 15th, 2007, 11:30 AM   #44
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406 projects worth RM1.8b under 9MP implemented in Johor

JOHOR BARU: A total of 406 projects worth RM1.8billlion have been implemented under the Ninth Malaysian Plan this year.

Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman told the state assembly that 391 projects worth RM2.9bil were carried out last year.

"We still have another 1,650 projects which are in the planning stages - that include tender awarding, designing process and preparing work specification.

"To date 274 projects have been completed while 244 have not been started under the 9MP," he said adding that, the state government had identified a few problems that could hamper the plans including shortage of materials and price war.

To avoid the problems, Abdul Ghani told Ayub Jamil (BN-Rengit), that copper and steel materials have been classified as controlled items and the government would monitor its price in order to avoid any shortage of materials.

"The state works department has been told to gather figures on materials needed for the projects and forward it to the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs office to be monitored," said Ghani.
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Old June 18th, 2007, 07:02 AM   #45
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PM: IDR could be emulated elsewhere in the country
By B Suresh Ram, 15 Jun 2007 4:35 PM
THEEDGEDAILY


Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said he may consider easing investment restrictions and roll back race-based policies if the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) in southern Johor is proven successful.

Asked at a dinner with business executives here last night if the manner of the redevelopment of the state at IDR would be emulated elsewhere in the country, the prime minister replied with a simple: "Yes."

Abdullah was participating in a short question-and-answer session with participants of the dinner, which was organised by the Kuala Lumpur Business Club, after he had delivered his address entitled "Looking Back, Forging Ahead: 50 Years of Business in Malaysia."

A participant had asked the prime minister if investment restrictions could also be lifted for other parts of the country given that there appeared to be a shift in the government's attitude towards race-based policies.

The government is excluding foreigners from the 30% bumiputera shareholding requirement and allowing 100% ownership in activities within the IDR.

To another question from a local journalist from the floor, Abdullah acknowledged that the proposed merger exercise between three Permodalan Nasional Bhd-related group of plantation companies was not an easy task.

"We have given our blessing for the merger and are as keen as anybody else," he said, when asked how strong the political will was to forge ahead with the merger that "appeared to be facing difficulties."

"We are watching carefully on what is happening," he said, adding that the government was waiting to see the outcome of the merger exercise and the subsequent performance of the enlarged entity to ensure that it benefited all parties, including the shareholders.

The merger involves the group of companies of Sime Darby Bhd, Kumpulan Guthrie Bhd and Golden Hope Plantations Bhd.

It has been reported that PNB had been acquiring the shares in these companies for over RM2 billion and had in the process pushed up the share prices.
On another matter, Abdullah denied that the government's recent pay hike for civil servants was nothing more than an election ploy. "It is not fair to say that it is an election gimmick."

He added that there were many opinions that the increased salary and benefits would retain a talented civil service and also increase productivity as well as improve the public delivery system.

"We increase it because we have the money and not because the election is two weeks or two years away."

On retaining a skilled workforce in the country, he said the country should not overly restrict the entry of skilled workers, particularly in the strategic sectors.

"We should facilitate skilled foreign students to stay on after graduating. In short we must benefit from the globalised flow of human capital," he said.
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Old June 18th, 2007, 12:37 PM   #46
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Heard that construction of JB monorail from skudai to JB started already...is this true?!
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Old June 18th, 2007, 12:52 PM   #47
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Heard that construction of JB monorail from skudai to JB started already...is this true?!
U heard this from who/what?
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Old June 18th, 2007, 01:26 PM   #48
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Quote:
U heard this from who/what?
From my friend study in UTM skudai.
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Old June 20th, 2007, 09:14 AM   #49
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Old June 29th, 2007, 04:27 AM   #50
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Malay businessmen eyeing Iskandar

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JOHOR BARU, Fri:

Bumiputera entrepreneurs are stepping up their search for business opportunities in the Iskandar Development Region.
Yesterday, a group of 47 representatives from some of the biggest names in Malay business, such as UDA Holdings Berhad, Permodalan Nasional Berhad and Johor Corporation subsidiaries, went to Waterfront City at Danga Bay and the development clusters in Nusajaya.

They are looking at developing commercial and residential units and opportunities in the services sector.

UDA Holdings Berhad managing director Jaafar Abu Hassan said although this was their first official visit to Iskandar, Bumiputera entrepreneurs had held discussions with the and Entrepreneur and Co-operative Development Ministry on how they could participate.

"We have about 149ha of undeveloped land in Iskandar and we are looking at ways to streamline its development with other areas," he said.
UDA Holdings has another 323ha in Bandar UDA Utama, Bandar Baru Tampoi and Skudai, which have been developed with commercial and residential units.

Recently, UDA launched 47 units of commercial properties in Bandar Baru Tampoi, of which 35 were snapped up at the launch, said Jaafar, adding that the encouraging response was due to Iskandar.

There has been an undercurrent of resentment in the Malay community that Iskandar would only benefit foreign investors, especially those from Singapore.

Jaafar refuted such beliefs, saying that Bumiputera entrepreneurs should not feel left out just because Iskandar was open to both domestic and foreign investors.

Pelangi Berhad chief executive officer Azmar Talib echoed the sentiment, adding that the region’s seven key development clusters, such as the Southern Industrial Logistic Cluster, would generate enough business for all.

"Bumiputera entrepreneurs have to be aggressive in seizing the opportunities in Iskandar. Otherwise, they will only have themselves to blame," Azmar said.

Pelangi Berhad, a property developer here, has a band of undeveloped land bordering Waterfront City and Taman Perling, consisting of about 40ha reserved for low-end units.

"With the exclusive projects sandwiching the undeveloped land, we have reviewed the initial plan of constructing low-end units and we will replace them with something more exciting in line with other projects," he said.

Johor Entrepreneurs Malaysia Berhad chairman Bukhari Abdul Rahman said they were also exploring opportunities in the services industry such as in healthcare, parking, landscaping, transport, cleaning and building management.
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Old June 30th, 2007, 01:03 PM   #51
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politician words Rest in Peace lagi baik la.

June 30, 2007 13:10 PM

Don't Expect Special Treatment In IDR, Singaporean Investors Told


By Jackson Sawatan

SINGAPORE, June 30 (Bernama) -- Singapore companies intending to invest in the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) cannot expect privileged treatment from Malaysia just like the "generous treatment" accorded by China to investors from Hong Kong in Shenzhen province, Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew said.

"Singapore cannot expect the same treatment from Malaysia," he said in a special interview with Berita Harian to mark the daily's 50th anniversary tomorrow.

Lee, still an influential figure in the Singapore cabinet, said Singapore companies must evaluate whether their presence are welcomed at IDR as there are protests from among Umno leaders, especially from Johor.

"On one side Pas is trying to topple the prime minister but when Umno leaders, particularly from Johor, are also doing the same, Singaporean investors must seriously ask themselves when this attitude will change and whether they welcome us in IDR," he said.

The IDR, straddling 2,217 sq km in south Johor, is a massive project undertaken by the Malaysian government, which many observers say will complement its ultra-modern neighbour Singapore, just like Shenzhen to Hong Kong.

Lee said IDR could pose pressure to Singapore just like Shenzhen to Hong Kong.

The Singapore founding father said Shenzhen was wooing industries from Hong Kong to the province and to nearby towns.

"This has left Hong Kong with only a few manufacturing plants and with high unemployment rate. Hong Kong's economy is now dependent on the service sector," he told Berita Harian, the sole Malay newspaper in the republic.

"If Singapore loses many industries to IDR, we will face serious unemployment problem as not all factory workers can find jobs in the service sector," he said.

He, however, said Singapore would support IDR as the two countries are bound to gain from the multi-billion ringgit project.

"From a wider perspective, we believe it is good for the two countries, with Malaysia savouring the spin-offs from Singapore's economic growth, and similarly Singapore," he said.

Internal politics and protests to Singaporeans investing in IDR are to exploit the issues and to erode support to Abdullah's leadership and the co-operation in the development region, he added.

-- BERNAMA
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 06:16 AM   #52
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Tebrau Teguh banking on Johor construction deals
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By ZAZALI MUSA

JOHOR BARU: Tebrau Teguh Bhd is currently bidding for construction projects worth over RM1bil under the Ninth Malaysian Plan (9MP) and in the Iskandar Development Region (IDR).

Executive chairman Johar Salim Yahaya said all the tendered projects were in Johor and the company was confident of securing at least 30% worth of the contracts.

They included the RM900mil river-cleaning project and the new Permas-Pasir Gudang coastal highway, he said.

“The 9MP and IDR offer good opportunities for the company to enhance its earnings in the long term,” Johar told StarBiz after the company AGM last Thursday.

Under 9MP, some 1,650 projects are in various stages of planning, tender awarding, design and work specification in Johor.

Johar said the river-cleaning project involved three rivers in the Johor Baru district – Skudai, Segget and Tebrau – which were badly polluted.

He said the 20-year IDR plan, with estimated investments of US$108bil, would transform the socio-economy of southern Johor.

The RM12bil allocation from the Government to improve the infrastructure in IDR over the next five years would also offer many opportunities.

Johar said Tebrau Teguh still had 1,200ha of river-fronting undeveloped land within the IDR and it would fully utilise the property to benefit from the growth area.

“The company wants to retain its competitive edge and maximise its land value and return with the right product,” he said.

Johar said the company would be launching The Oasis @ Bayu Puteri, comprising 180 five-storey town houses, this month.

For the financial year ended Dec 31, 2006 (FY06), Tebrau Teguh recorded pre-tax profit of RM1.43mil on revenue of RM64.49mil compared with RM660,000 and RM34.24mil respectively in FY05.
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Old July 3rd, 2007, 05:31 PM   #53
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The Edge Newspaper

25-06-2007: KSL replicates Mid Valley concept
By Surin Murugiah
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KSL Holdings Bhd is developing a hotel and shopping centre project in Johor Bahru that replicates the Mid Valley Megamall concept and will have a gross development value (GDV) of RM180 million.

The project, called KSL City, is expected to contribute up to 30% to KSL's annual revenue upon completion in 2010, executive director Ku Tien Sek said.

The Johor-based property is at present identifying suitable operators to manage the proposed 600-room hotel and anchor tenants for the five-storey shopping centre.

Speaking to analysts and fund managers here last Friday, Ku said the company was confident the development would draw tourists visiting Singapore's integrated resort and theme park as it offered a much more affordable hotel stay and shopping experience.

"Hotel rates in Singapore in 2010 could be in the region of S$400 to S$500 (RM898 to RM1,123) per night. Our two-block hotel, on the other hand, is divided into three-star and budget rooms, priced around RM150 and RM100 per night respectively.

"We will also offer shuttle services for our guests who wish to travel to the island resort and theme park in Singapore, which makes the stay at our hotel worthwhile for budget travellers and families," he said.

Ku said the company expected to cater to foreign and domestic tourists with its reasonably priced hotel rooms and the convenience of shopping at the mall, based on the successful Mid Valley business model.

On KSL's property development business, Ku said it would continue to launch commercial and residential properties this year and in 2008, and was targeting a 10% growth in net profit from property sales this year.

He said the company was targeting some RM110 million in net profit this year, including RM40 million from the extraordinary gains from the compensation for the compulsory government acquisition of part of its Taman Bestari Indah project for the Senai-Desaru Highway.

"We are also targeting a 10% growth in net profit from sales in 2008, meaning a 10% improvement from RM70 million this year," Ku said.

The government acquired 28ha from KSL for the highway, and the total compensation of RM77.4 million covers lost sales and construction cost.

KSL now has three flagship projects, namely, Taman Nusa Bestari in Skudai, and Taman Bestari Indah and Taman Kempas Indah, both in Tebrau, with a combined GDV of RM3 billion.

It is launching its Pandan Commercial Centre which has a GDV of RM31 million in the fourth quarter of this year, and will hand over the Giant Hypermarket situated at Pusat Perdagangan Muar (PPM) to the hypermart operator on a 15-year RM60 million lease next month.

"We bought the land at PPM at around RM3 per sq ft (psf), and the current market value (including the building) is around RM100psf. It makes more sense to lease out the building as over 15 years it translates into higher rental value," he said, adding that the PPM project launched earlier this year had a remaining GDV of RM390 million.

Going forward, KSL is banking on the potential of the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) where it has about 405ha, which is about half of its total landbank in Johor.

Ku said the company was also optimistic that sales for its residential and commercial properties would pick up this year after a sluggish 2006, especially with the buzz over the IDR and the waiver of real property gains tax that took effect in April this year.

For the financial year ended Dec 31, 2006, KSL posted a lower net profit of RM67.75 million compared with RM76.23 million the previous year due to lower sales. Ku said sales have started picking since early this.

While KSL's 1Q2007 net profit surged almost 200% year-on-year to RM54.9 million on the back of RM103.3 million revenue, this included the RM58 million compensation received from the government.
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Old July 4th, 2007, 12:32 PM   #54
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Property stocks rally, IDR counters up
by Tamimi Omar
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Property stocks rallied yesterday, with counters linked to the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) and Bandar Raya Developments Bhd (BRDB) among the major gainers, as analysts remained upbeat over the sector's prospects, with the return of the "feel good" factor.

The property index closed 17.28 points higher to 1,147.55 yesterday while The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index rose 8.77 points to 1,373.14.

Bandar Raya was the top gainer, up 32 sen to RM4.10 with 5.71 million shares done. CLSA Research has initiated coverage on the company with a "buy" recommendation and price target of RM5.40.

Companies seen to benefit from the multi-billion-ringgit development of the IDR also rose in active trade. They were Johor Land Bhd, Tebrau Teguh Bhd and government-linked counters, including Malaysian Resources Corporation Bhd (MRCB) and UEM World Bhd.

Volume leader UEM World with 31.42 million shares done gained 32 sen to RM4.24 while MRCB rose to a seven-year high of RM3, up 23 sen. Tebrau Teguh added 17 sen to RM1.70 and Johor Land eight sen higher to RM1.51.

Interest in property stocks spilled over to Equine Capital Bhd, which gained 28 sen to RM3.88, and Sunway City Bhd and YTL Land & Development Bhd each 16 sen higher at RM5 and RM2.06 respectively.

A&M Realty Bhd and Encorp Bhd added 13 sen each to RM2.79 and RM1.61 while GuocoLand Bhd and Plenitude Bhd gained eight sen each to RM3.22 and RM2.84.

Sunway City attracted interest after Aseambankers Equity Research raised its earnings outlook by 5.3% for FY09 to incorporate expected contribution from its RM1.5 billion Hyderabad joint-venture (JV) project.

The research house also continued to overweight the property sector following the waiver of the real property gains tax (RPGT) and relaxation of foreign ownership for properties over RM250,000.

"The market anticipates the property party to continue, with more government incentives to benefit the low-to-medium property segment and to renewed interest in real estate investment trusts (REITS)," it said.

The research house said developers were seen raising selling prices between 5% and 100% year-on-year from their launch prices.

"Just last year, eyebrows were raised when high-end properties around the KLCC were going for RM1,000 per sq ft. Today, the upcoming Four Seasons is set to fetch RM2,000 psf.

"We expect the pricing gap between the mass market and high-end residences in Malaysia to continue to widen, in line with the regional phenomenon, as petrodollars and stock market wealth continue to have spill-over effects on property demand in Malaysia as prices are cheap vis-a-vis regional peers," it said.

Aseambankers Research said the low-to-medium property segment was set to receive boost next as it believed the government was looking at options to encourage more property ownership for the mass market.

The options would include the restructuring of the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) depositors' accounts to allow more withdrawals to purchase property, the reduction or waiver of stamp duty tax and fine tuning of the Malaysia My Second Home Programme.

Aseambankers also believed that the government would further introduce REIT tax incentives to revive interest in the investment instrument.

"We believe the government is aware of the need to be more competitive and on par with regional peers," it said.
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Old July 4th, 2007, 02:17 PM   #55
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Ekovest to buy entire stake in Danga Bay
TheStar Biz 4 July 2007

KUALA LUMPUR: Ekovest Bhd has proposed to buy the entire stake in Danga Bay Sdn Bhd (DBSB) for RM1.1bil, which will be financed via issuance of new shares and irredeemable convertible unsecured loan stocks.

In a filing with Bursa Malaysia yesterday, the company said it had signed a share sale agreement with Credence Resources Sdn Bhd and DBSB in regards to the proposed acquisition.

Ekovest has requested for trading in its shares to be suspended today pending the full announcement of the proposal. It closed 33 sen higher at RM3.04 yesterday.

The company is currently the project manager of Danga Bay, an integrated mixed residential, recreational and commercial waterfront development in Johor Baru.

Last August, Ekovest got the rights to subscribe to 30% of the enlarged share capital of DBSB.

Ekovest executive vice-chairman Datuk Lim Kang Hoo is a substantial shareholder in both Ekovest and DBSB.
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Old July 5th, 2007, 04:58 AM   #56
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Al-Rajhi aims to be gateway to Iskandar
By Siti Nurbaiyah Nadzmi
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July 5 2007

AL-RAJHI Bank, the world's biggest Islamic banking group, is confident that its newly-opened branch in Taman Molek, Johor, will become a gateway for investments from the Middle East into the Iskandar Development Region (IDR).

Its chief executive officer Ahmed Rehman said the bank has the advantage of attracting investors from the Middle East who are familiar with the Al-Rajhi banking environment.

"Al-Rajhi's presence in IDR will facilitate investors from Middle East as Arab investors are already familiar with our syariah banking products and procedures," he said at the opening of the bank's first branch outside the Klang Valley.

The Johor branch is the bank's 13th branch in the country since Al-Rajhi began its operations last October. Tunku Mahkota Johor Tunku Ibrahim Ismail officiated the opening.

Ahmed said Johor is the preferred location after the Klang Valley due its strategic location and the vast economic development in IDR, which is expected to see the inflow of foreign direct investment from the Middle East.

"Our bank is well-placed to look after the needs of these investors who will have Syariah compliant banking products which they are accustomed to back home. This is an important incentive for the investors," he said.

Al-Rajhi has launched 10 products and services such as savings account, current account, fixed term account, home and car loans, debit and charge card, and is expanding into corporate investment banking.

Ahmed said following the agreement with local banking solutions provider e-Kencana Sdn Bhd, which acts as a vendor to provide the electronic link and host between Malaysia and Saudi Arabia, the bank will soon offer automated teller machine (ATM) transactions for Malaysians travelling to the kingdom.

Al-Rajhi is to choose Malaysia as its Islamic Payment Switch (IPS), which will enable cross-border ATM fund transfers and other banking facilities between Malaysia and Saudi Arabia in accordance to the syariah law.

Ahmed said the bank will offer a prepaid Riyal Card to Malaysian haj and umrah pilgrims to withdraw cash from over 400 Al-Rajhi's branches or 1,600 ATMs in Saudi Arabia.

The prepaid card will be available in denominations of 100, 500, 1,000, and 5,000 riyal (100 Saudi riyal = RM93.79), and users of the prepaid card need not be Al Rajhi's account holders. More than 100,000 Malaysian Muslims travel to Mecca annually.

"Pilgrims from Malaysia need not carry plenty of cash, instead they can use the Riyal Card to access funds at any of our 400 branches and 1,600 ATMs in the kingdom," he said.

He also said that Al-Rajhi targets to open 50 branches in Malaysia by 2010 and become the market leader in Islamic banking in the country.
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Old July 5th, 2007, 09:30 PM   #57
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Abdullah Wants Protection Of Environment In IDR
July 05, 2007 18:26 PM

JOHOR BAHARU, July 5 (Bernama) -- Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi wants all those involved in the development of the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) in southern Johor to ensure that the environment there is protected.

"Given the fast-paced development that is taking place in the IDR, I would like to remind all to ensure the protection and sustainability of our precious surrounding environment," he said at the ground-breaking ceremony of the Asia Petroleum Hub (APH), an integrated petroleum storage and bunkering facility in Tanjung Bin, some 40 km west of here.

"The preservation of our natural assets is a critical aspect that must not be ignored," he added.

This was to ensure that the future generations could enjoy the fruits of the development in a balanced and sustainable manner, said Abdullah.

He also stressed that it was important for all government agencies and authorities to work seamlessly towards the success of the IDR, a 2,217 sq km of multi-sectoral development taking shape in southern Johor.

"Timely delivery of services and approvals are necessary to ensure that projects such as the APH are implemented in an efficient and successful manner," he said.

Abdullah said that it was with efficiency in mind that entities such as the Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) were formed to act as a one-stop centre and to drive the development within the IDR.

"With these initiatives in place, I am hopeful that private sector activities in the IDR will thrive. The government is committed to providing a conducive and business-friendly environment for the private sector to flourish," said Abdullah.

He expressed confidence that all government-related entities would be able to work together to implement plans under the IDR "without undue delays and unnecessary red tape".

-- BERNAMA
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Old July 5th, 2007, 09:31 PM   #58
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PM Launches Work On RM1.4 Billion Regional Petroleum Hub In Johor
July 05, 2007 16:17 PM

JOHOR BAHARU, July 5 (Bernama) -- Construction of a RM1.4 billion regional petroleum hub officially began Thursday on a 40-ha site on a reclaimed island at Tanjung Bin, some 40 km west of Johor Baharu.

The Asia Petroleum Hub (APH) is targeted for completion in 2009 with a total storage capacity of one million cubic metres.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said at the project's ground-breaking ceremony today that the establishment of APH will bring about many positive spillover effects and synergy to Malaysia as a whole and the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) in southern Johor in particular.

"APH will complement and enhance the capabilities of Johor Port at Pasir Gudang and Port of Tanjong Pelepas (PTP) to provide an integrated comprehensive package to its clients. In this respect, APH will provide uninterrupted bunkering services to liners calling at these ports," he said.

The project will be an integrated facility with multiple jetties and capable of handling all sizes of vessels from 1,000 deadweight tonnes (DWT) coastal tankers to 350,000 DWT ultralarge crude carriers.

It is also designed to handle over 30 million tonnes of petroleum products as well as accommodate over 3,000 vessels calling at the terminal annually.

The facility is being developed by APH Sdn Bhd, a consortium led by KIC Oil & Gas, which is the largest independent terminal operator as well as a major bunker player in Malaysia.

Abdullah noted that with the increase in activities, particularly in the highly specialised petroleum sector, the hub and its surrounding areas will be a magnet for talent, especially in the professional and technical segments.

"In this respect, I hope that there will be significant transfer of technology and knowledge in the relevant fields for the benefit of IDR and Malaysia as a whole," he said.

The facility will be managed by KIC Oil Terminals Sdn Bhd, which also manages oil terminals at PTP and Westports in Port Klang.

-- BERNAMA
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Old July 6th, 2007, 05:10 AM   #59
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uly 06, 2007 00:54 AM

IDR Investment Mission To China In September

JOHOR BAHARU, July 6 (Bernama) -- An investment mission to promote the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) to Chinese investors will be in the Xinjiang and Shanxi provinces from Sept 4 to 9.

The Malaysia-China Business Council (MCBC) joint chairman Tun Musa Hitam said the mission would be led by a delegation from Johor.

"Chinese investors want to know more in-depth the opportunities available in the IDR, and have asked us to promote the special economic zone to them," he said.

Musa spoke to reporters after the opening of the Malaysia-China Business Forum 2007 by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi here.

Musa expressed confidence in the potential for greater investment by China in Malaysia, including in the IDR. He said the MCBC would be more organised in its efforts to promote Malaysia as an investment destination when Chinese business delegations visit Malaysia.

He said a large business delegation from China was due in Malaysia next month.

-- BERNAMA
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Old July 6th, 2007, 04:21 PM   #60
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Ekovest plans RM19b waterfront city
by Surin Murugiah
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KUALA LUMPUR: Ekovest Bhd has unveiled a RM19.2 billion integrated waterfront city project at the Iskandar Development Region (IDR) in South Johor, making it the first private Malaysian investor to announce firm waterfront development there.

The project, to be developed in phases over 15 years, will be built on a 96ha site and is an extension to the existing Danga Bay development.

Ekovest has also signed a share sale agreement with Credence Resources Sdn Bhd and Danga Bay Holdings Sdn Bhd to buy land earmarked for the new flagship waterfront property.

On Tuesday, Ekovest had announced that it was acquiring Danga Bay Sdn Bhd, the developer of the Danga Bay project, for RM1.1 billion. Ekovest is the project manager of the RM550 million Danga Bay that has been under construction since 2000.

In a statement yesterday, Ekovest said it was set to take the lead in real estate development in IDR.

Its executive vice-chairman Datuk Lim Kang Ho said the waterfront belt would feature high-end residential, commercial and tourism-related shopping and leisure properties.

He said the masterplan included a financial centre, a luxury villa precinct, commercial centre and a promenade featuring retail, hotel, and leisure properties and a multimode public transport terminal for efficient air, sea, and rail and road access.

“This is in keeping with the government’s vision to transform South Johor into an international holiday destination and regional hub for business and investments,” he said, adding that plans were afoot for river taxis to boost connectivity with Singapore and the islands of Batam and Bintan.

“We have already secured building approvals for some of the project components. We expect to embark on construction and launch the mixed development by end-2007,” he said.

Projects targeted for launch this year include the RM536 million Danga Bay Service Residence and Resort Hotel. Also to be launched is phase one of the Sanctuary Island Villas, a luxury residential project on an exclusive island across the existing Danga Bay project site in Lido Beach.

The gross development value of phase one of the Sanctuary Island Vilas is RM330 million and will feature bungalow units priced at between RM3 million and RM15 million each.

Ekovest’s share price has risen some 25% from June 1’s closing of RM2.56 to the pre-suspension price of RM3.04 on Tuesday. It resumes trading today.
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