Govt to review infrastructure development approach

by BERNAMA/ pic by BERNAMA

MALAYSIA will be revisiting its approaches in infrastructure projects to reduce development gaps between the regions, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed (picture).

In his speech at the Invest Malaysia 2020 Series 2, today, he noted that there are some parts of the country which lacks even basic facilities.

“Besides building infrastructure, we also must increase the allocation for infrastructure maintenance. Our roads and highways as well as schools are in need of better maintenance.

“Financial resources are not unlimited. However, we will try our best to provide more allocation for the maintenance of infrastructure facilities,” Mustapa said.

He said the government acknowledged that infrastructure development is critical for the country’s continuous growth and competitivity.

Mustapa said under the 11th Malaysia Plan, RM259 billion had been earmarked for various development works, including high-impact projects such as the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit Line 2 (MRT2, the Light Rail Transit Line 3, the East Coast Rail Link and the Pan Borneo Highway.

The list of projects also includes the Kota Bharu Highway, the Central Spine Highway from Kuala Krai to Simpang Pelangai and the upcoming Rapid Transit System linking Johor Bahru and Singapore.

He added that Malaysia is also talking to its Singaporean counterpart on the revival of the High Speed Rail project, which is expected to cost RM68 billion.

“That being said, we must balance setting up new facilities with effective implementation.

“A key way this has been made possible is through Public Private Partnerships (PPP) – which merges private sector’s innovation with public sector’s societal awareness,” he added.

To further emphasise the PPP as a catalyst for broader sectoral reform and greater private sector participation, Mustapa said the government has established a RM20 billion Facilitation Fund to catalyse private investments in nationally strategic areas under the 10th and 11th Malaysia Plan.

“To-date, 320 Facilitation Fund projects worth RM14.23 billion have been approved so far, and the projects have created RM232.46 billion worth of economic activities,” he added.