KUCHING: The establishment of three development agencies under the Sarawak Regional Corridor Development Authority (Recoda) will boost the economy in the state’s interiors, highlands and northern areas.

Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan said the establishment of Upper Rajang Development Agency (URDA), Highland Development Authority (HDA) and Northern Region Development Authority (NRDA) would focus on those areas as these districts have their own potential.

He said the uniqueness of these areas required a different approach to attract investors there.

Besides investment, he said the development of infrastructure, roads, electricity supply and telecommunications would be given priority in these areas.

“URDA, for example, is the place where Bakun, Murum and Baleh hydroelectric dams are located, which not only can provide us with sufficient electricity supply but also be developed as ecotourism and agriculture areas commercially.

“Ulu Rajang is a place that has its own resources and uniqueness. This area also has an area declared as a National Park and this is a strength that can be developed even more for ecotourism,” he told Bernama in an exclusive interview.

Awang Tengah, who is also Sarawak International Trade and Industry, Industrial Terminal and Entrepreneur Development Minister, said the state has many other large potential areas including the Samalaju Industrial Zone in Bintulu which housed many multinational companies and has attracted RM28.43 billion in investment to date.

“To date, a total of 6,654 jobs have been created and 68 percent are local workers. All these investments have resulted in attaining a total of RM9.4 billion in exports in 2020,” he said.

Awang Tengah said the state government would also expand the Sama Jaya High Tech Park in Kuching.

He said the investment activities at Sama Jaya High Tech Park has created 13,761 employment opportunities of which 99 percent are locals who are also in management positions.

“The total investment in Sama Jaya (High Tech Park) has now reached RM17.5 billion, with an annual spinoff rate of RM667 million.

“The export value of Sama Jaya High Tech Park stood at RM6.93 billion for 2020. We plan to expand further with many multinational companies interested in investing in this area,” he added. – Bernama