Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda) aimed to attract at least RM25bil in new investments into Iskandar Malaysia in Johor every year over the next decade, even as it prepares to launch a review of the region’s comprehensive masterplan.
Its chief executive officer Datuk Ismail Ibrahim said the economic growth corridor must be able to continuously attract strong interest from both domestic and foreign investors.
“The key for Iskandar Malaysia now is to ensure its further growth and progress,’’ he told reporters at the “Elevating Cross Border Opportunities in Asean and Beyond” seminar organised by Standard Chartered Bank.
In the first quarter of this year, Iskandar Malaysia secured RM7.8bil worth of fresh investments. About a third of these new investments came from overseas.
Launched on Nov 4, 2006, Iskandar Malaysia is three times bigger than Singapore and two times the size of Hong Kong.
It is divided into five flagship zones – JB City Centre, Nusajaya, Eastern Gate Development Zone, Western Gate Development Zone and Senai-Kulai.
Since its launch until March 31, 2015, Iskandar Malaysia had received RM166.10bil in cumulative committed investments from RM158.13bil as of Dec 31, 2014.
Ismail said the last 10 years had taught stakeholders in Iskandar Malaysia that a strong collaboration between partners would eventually produced results that they could be proud of.
He said without cooperation from the federal and Johor governments, the private sector and the community, Iskandar Malaysia would not be moving in the right direction as outlined in its Comprehensive Development Plan (CDP).
Under the CDP2006-2025, Irda has been tasked to transform Iskandar Malaysia, covering 2,217 sq km in south Johor, into an international metropolis by 2025.
Ismail said the second CDP, which is a review of the first CDP, had been submitted to the various authorities, including Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin.
“Early this year, we tabled it at the state level and that was done through the State Standing Committee. What we need to do now is to prepare for the launch.
“We will get a date from the Mentri Besar, which will either be the end of the second quarter of this year or early third quarter,” he said.
The second CDP will focus on social and environmental management, as well to provide an insight into the outlook and opportunities in Iskandar Malaysia.