Complete Property Market Updates of Singapore

March 26, 2008

Singapore can help market IDR: MP

Filed under: General — Propertymarketupdates @ 12:20 am

The federal and Johor state governments should forge a smart partnership with Singapore and use the Republic’s international trade links in marketing the Iskandar Development Region (IDR).

Pulai MP Nur Jazlan Mohamed, whose constituency is located in the IDR, said that as many multinationals were based in the Republic, Singapore’s international trade links could also be used to thwart negative reports from foreign media.

‘We have to accept the fact that Singapore is more highly regarded by the international community than Malaysia. Its trade links are enormous. What is wrong with Johor using Singapore’s international links? If the Singapore government can work with us, it can help promote the IDR and we can together develop the IDR,’ he told Bernama in an exclusive interview yesterday.

Mr Nur Jazlan, son of former information minister and former Umno secretary-general Tan Sri Mohamed Rahmat, is the director of several public-listed companies.

According to Mr Nur Jazlan, Singapore is a hub for several foreign companies and the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC), was active in the international financial market. GIC had recently made several high-profile investments in UBS and Citigroup.

He said that the frequent negative reporting by foreign media sent the wrong message to foreign investors. He cited as an example the foreign media report on the 12th General Election, which focused on racial tensions and the street demonstrations organised by an unregistered group, the Hindu Rights Action Force.

‘We have to find ways to reach the international trade community in Singapore to convince foreign investors to invest in the IDR, and to put an end to the foreign media’s negative perceptions of Malaysia,’ he said.

He said that the IDR would not succeed if the media and foreign investors continued to hold negative perceptions of Malaysia. The IDR, launched by Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi in November 2006, covers an area of 2,200 sq km in Southern Johor.

Recently, Johor Menteri Besar Abdul Ghani Othman, who also chairs the Iskandar Region Development Authority (IRDA) jointly with the PM, said that the IDR had so far received a total of RM22 billion (S$9.5 billion) in investments.

The IDR was on the right track to achieving its investment target of RM47 billion by 2010. Mr Nur Jazlan was also asked about the lukewarm response from Singapore investors in the IDR, compared to the enthusiastic response from Middle East investors.

‘Maybe the Singapore investors do not feel welcome,’ he said. Maybe society as a whole should be more open-minded to all investments in the IDR and Johor,’ he added. – Bernama

Source : Business Times – 18 Mar 2008

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