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Johor mulls new foreign investment incentive to develop northern region

Last Update: 24/01/2019

JOHOR BAHRU, Jan 24 (Bernama) -- The state government is mulling the introduction of a new incentive which may be in the form of a five-year tax exemption especially for foreign investors keen on investing in northern Johor, says Menteri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian.

He said the incentive would encouraging foreign investment in this region which received less attention from investors compared to the southern part of the state.

However, Osman said full details of the incentive was not yet finalised as the government needed to take into account feedback from members of the recently established Johor Economic Council.

“I expect the details to be ready within a month. This (incentive) is an encouragment for them (foreign investors) to venture there (northern Johor) but they have to abide by certain conditions such as a recruiting locals and paying then a salary not less than RM1,500,” he told reporters after visiting state-owned company, YPJ Holdings Sdn Bhd here today.

Osman also said the incentive was not intended just to develop the state’s northern region but to discourage the migration of people to Johor Bahru.

“If we look at the statistics, these areas (northen region) are scarely populated. Why …. because of a lack of job opportunities (there),” he said.

Meanwhile, Osman said he had requested YPJ to diversify into new areas to maintain its profitability without relying on its existing core sectors such as plantation.

He said YPJ should consider commercial farming and the export of herbs such as lemongrass, ginger, galangal (lengkuas) and tumeric which can be cultivated on YPJ-owned land.

Osman urged YPJ to take advantage of the state government’s plan to develop several districts, such as Mersing for tourism and Segamat for agriculture.

“We need to consider new ideas and directions to seek profit. YPJ will face strong challenges in the future especially since it owns thousands of oil palm plantations which are no longer pas profitable due to falling prices.

“Last year, YPJ reaped RM17 million in profit from its plantations when it, by right, be earnings between RM40 million and RM50 million as in previous years,” he added.




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