KUCHING (Aug 19): Samalaju Port management has been given until this December to resolve issues pertaining to its main vessel turnaround time.

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said this is very important as the port was expected to play a very critical role in the state’s industrial development activities, and Samalaju is one of its top growth areas.

“Samalaju is a leading industrial area in the state and its port users are our foreign investors. We are actually in the position to attract even more investors.

“But we are not the only ‘beautiful lady’ in the region. The investors have other choices at their disposal. So in order to attract them, our ports must meet their standard. They must be very happy with what we have to offer. In other words, our ports must be very efficient, which should be their Key Performance Indicator,” he said after a working visit to the port today.

Uggah said efficient ports also are very important for the state to achieve its high-income status by 2030.

“We have our Post Covid-19 Development Strategy 2030 to propel us towards this. We need to act now to resolve any issues because we do not have the time. Time is not on our side.

“So within these few months we must be proactive,” he said, adding that the port must also strive to improve all essential services besides upgrading the necessary infrastructure.

Meanwhile, Bintulu Port Holdings Berhad Group chief executive officer Datuk Mohammad Medan Abdullah who was present praised the state government for being very serious in wanting to solve the teething problems faced at Samalaju Port.

He said Uggah as the Minister of Infrastructure and Ports Development had first visited Samalaju Port in February this year to find out for himself problems affecting it.

This was then followed by a laboratory to seek solutions and upgrading recommendations.

“This would augur well for the port’s further development and success as one of the very important ports in the state,” he said.

Accompanying Uggah were his deputy minister Datuk Majang Renggi, Murum assemblyman Kennedy Chuk Pai and permanent secretary to the Ministry of Infrastructure and Ports Development Chiew Chew Yaw. -Source: The Borneo Post