SINGAPORE, Jan 25 — The Iskandar region will continue to be promoted aggressively to help with the country’s development, said Iskandar Region Development Authority (IRDA) Chief Executive Datuk Ismail Ibrahim.
“We shall wait for further policies. I am sure the Federal government has its own justification. IRDA will definitely help with Malaysia economic development,” he said when commenting on the recalibration of the 2016 Budget which would be presented on Jan 28.
Ismail was met recently on the sidelines of the Sustainable co-City Development Forum cum Forest City Global press conference.
Between 2006 and November 2015, this southern development corridor had attracted investments of RM189 billion.
It was reported that IRDA would finalise talks by year-end with at least three theme park operators to set up business in the region.
The projects would be part of the RM30 billion targeted investments earmarked for this year.
Besides, IRDA was also looking at attracting operators of five to six-star hotels and meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) to set up base there.
Ismail said Singapore, China and the United States would emerge as the top prominent investors in the region.
China was slowly emerging as a big investor, having invested RM176 billion in the development of the Forest City, said Ismail.
He said the region would also receive one or two more investments from the United States soon.
The Iskandar region is also home to investors from the Middle East, ASEAN, Europe and the Asia Pacific.
On the investments in Forest City, which involved land reclamation in west Iskandar, Ismail said it was a strategic decision.
He, however, said there was no decision to limit future development to onshore only.
“Forest City”, a lush urban getaway on four man-made islands in Iskandar Malaysia was formally unveiled on Friday by Country Garden Holdings Co Ltd, a Hong Kong-listed property developer.
Sprawled over 1,386.05 hectares, Forest City is a joint development with Johor’s Esplanade Danga 88 Sdn Bhd.
With an estimated investment of RM175.8 billion over the next 20 years, Forest City is expected to fuel the economic development of Iskandar region, the main southern development corridor in Johor and neighbouring Singapore.
Eight industries including education, healthcare and tourism will be the main economic pillars of growth at Forest City.