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Johor to kick off 12 mega projects under IDR

JOHOR BARU: About 12 mega projects totalling billions of ringgit are expected to kick off in 2008 under the Iskandar Development Region (IDR).

Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman said among the projects scheduled for implementation in the first quarter of the year are earthworks for the RM4.2bil Node 1 project in Nusajaya and the RM1bil Eastern Dispersal Link.

He said the other big projects include the 15km RM1bil Coastal Highway linking Johor Baru with Nusajaya, and the RM900mil clean up of Sungai Skudai, Segget and Tebrau.

“The new state administrative centre in Nusajaya, worth RM1.2bil, is also expected to start operations by March,” he told reporters at a press conference to deliver his New Year message.

Abdul Ghani said, in addition, around 8,000 squatters would be resettled at a cost of RM583mil, while the RM500mil MSC Cyber City project in Kulai would also begin.

“We will also enhance safety and security under the IDR to the tune of RM330mil,” he said.

Abdul Ghani said he was optimistic that 2008 would be the year to implement the scheduled projects under the IDR.

He also dismissed concerns that a possible recession of the US economy would negatively impact development projects in the region, saying that smaller countries would enjoy high growth rates.

“Besides US and Europe, everybody is optimistic about economic growth and we expect the world rate of growth to go beyond 6%, even in Africa,” he said.

Abdul Ghani said he was confident the IDR would continue to attract large foreign and local investments in 2008.

“I want to stress here that the IDR is not just for foreign investors. We want Malaysians to use the opportunity to invest in the project as well,” he said.

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