ECER Aims At European Investors

4/18/2009 — Press Release
The East Coast Economic Region (ECER) is on an investment mission to Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom, led by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry.
Held from April 19 to 29, the trade and investment mission will enhance bilateral trade and investments, with seminars and business meetings organized in the cities of Frankfurt, Milan and London.
During the road show, ECER Development Council representatives will focus on the region’s core economic thrusts in oil, gas and petrochemical, manufacturing, agriculture and tourism.
Malaysia is an attractive destination for foreign investments, particularly in the manufacturing sector, with the country recording 38 per cent increase in approved FDIs amounting to RM46.1 billion or 73.4 per cent increase in 2008 from RM33.4 billion in 2007.
This represented the fifth consecutive year of growth in FDIs with RM20.2 billion in 2006, RM17.9 billion in 2005 and RM13.1 billion in 2004.
Germany ranks tenth among Malaysia’s global trading partners. It was an important source of FDI in 2008, with investments of RM4.4 billion compared with RM3.7 billion a year earlier. Germany was the second largest source of FDI in 2007, with RM3.7 billion compared with RM232.3 million in 2006.
For the first 11 months of 2008, bilateral trade between Malaysia and Italy amounted to US$2.22 billion, and Italy has remained Malaysia’s fifth largest trading partner within the European Union.
Malaysia’s trade with Italy has grown two-fold from US$1.22 billion in 2001 to US$2.41 billion in 2007. Investment inflows from Italy into Malaysia from 2003 to October 2008 totaled US$118.07 million in 24 approved projects.
For the first 10 months of 2008, inflows amounted to US$21.57 million, an increase of 42 per cent from the previous year.
Meanwhile, UK’s strong ties with Malaysia, a familiar commercial and legal framework and the widespread use of English are all conducive to a vibrant business relationship.
UK exports in goods and services to Malaysia in 2005 were valued at £1520m, placing Malaysia as the UK’s second largest export market in South East Asia, after Singapore. The UK is also one of the largest investors in Malaysia, investing over £20bn in the past 30 years.
Some noteworthy projects within the ECER that will be promoted during the road show include:
Oil, Gas & Petrochemical 
Malaysia’s first fully integrated plastics park is located in Kertih. With ready feedstock from Kertih Integrated Petrochemical Complex and Gebeng Integrated Petrochemical Complex, the Kertih Plastics Park (KPP) is linked by road and rail to Kuantan, which is the region’s export hub.
The KPP is expected to be fully operational in 2015, attracting RM2 billion worth of investments and creating more than 7,000 jobs.
ECER is also home to the 2,500-hectare Gebeng Integrated Petrochemical Complex which focuses on downstream petrochemical products and R&D.
While the Gebeng Integrated Petrochemical Complex focuses on propylene-based products, separately the Kertih Integrated Petrochemical Complex focuses on ethylene-based products.
The Kertih Plastics Park feeds into the ready feedstock from Kertih Integrated Petrochemical Complex and Gebeng Integrated Petrochemical Complex.
All these parks provide basic support facilities including logistics and special services specific to the downstream industry to allow immediate start-up of operations.
Halal Parks
Supporting the country’s vision to be a global halal hub in view of rising demand for halal products, two halal parks with the support of a globally recognized halal certification and logo will be established within the ECER.
Gambang Halal Park in Pahang focuses on halal food products specifically while Pasir Mas Halal Park in Kelantan focuses on halal food and non-food products.
Industrial & Technology Parks 
The Kemaman Heavy Industrial Park is a dedicated heavy industrial park to be set up in Kemaman measuring 2,000 hectares in Phase 1 and 530 hectares in Phase 2.
Located next to Kemaman Port, this industrial park will see the establishment of a free zone to support manufacturing activities which require the importation of raw materials, component parts, machinery and equipment related to the manufacturing processes.
The establishment of Pahang Technology Park in this region is expected to cater for the international and local companies operating in software development, software outsourcing and goods production.
Automotive Park 
Ideally positioned as South East Asia’s automotive supply and distribution base, the establishment of Pekan-Peramu Automotive Industrial Park in Pahang for the manufacturing and assembly of motor vehicles is in line with the National Automotive Policy.
To complement this, the Kuantan Port City will see the setting up of an automotive distribution centre, which will facilitate the distribution of automobiles to Sabah, Sarawak and the rest of the Asia Pacific.
The automotive distribution free zone will turn Kuantan Port into the second national gateway for vehicle trade.
Palm Oil Industry Park
Taking advantage of its proximity to the country’s major palm oil producing areas and petrochemical feedstock, the Palm Oil Industry Park will be developed within the Kuantan Port for logistical and industry support benefits.
The park houses a combination of manufacturers of palm oil derived products such as cooking oil, margarine and cosmetics; with R&D, logistic services and support industries including specialty packaging, pallet and specialty chemicals completing seamless delivery of a quick, plug-and-play set up.
Kelantan is the ECER’s poultry production hub with the set up of integrated poultry parks in Gua Musang and a satellite farm in Jeli which involves export-grade feed mill, breeder farms, hatchery, commercial farms, slaughter houses and processing plants.
Meanwhile, poultry processing parks will be set up in Gambang and Chendering while a poultry feed production feed mill has been planned for Gebeng.
Herb & Biotechnology 
Herb and biotechnology clusters over 1,000 hectares in Gua Musang, Kelantan will be established for research, organic herb farming, processing, incubation and training centres.
Herbal parks will also be set up in Dungun, Terengganu; Lanchang and Raub in Pahang as well as a satellite herbal farm in Jeli, Kelantan.
The ECER is long known for its cultural heritage. Major handicraft initiatives include setting up of handicraft villages to serve as one-stop centres for the manufacturer to produce and market niche products.
Established in Kota Bharu, Kuala Terengganu, Temerloh, Chendering and Pekan, these centres will also promote local handicraft products such as batik, silverware, wood carving, songket and tenun weaving.