More investors for Kertih Plastics Park

12/2/2008 — The StarBiz
Three potential investors are expected to come on board the Kertih Plastics Park (KPP) next year.
The investors comprised both local and foregin companies, including one from Australia, said East Coast Economic Region (ECER) Development Council chief executive officer Datuk Jebasingam Issace John.
“The companies are from the various polymer sectors,” he told StarBiz yesterday.
KPP has already attracted three investors: Hi Essence Cable Sdn Bhd, a manufacturer of cables and wires with a proposed investment of RM85mil; pipe maker Latenfield Pipe Industries Sdn Bhd (RM40mil); and FMD Polypipes Industry Sdn Bhd, a producer of heavy duty bags and pipes (RM20mil).
They would be having joint ventures with foreign companies and were expected to ink some deals today, he said.
“It is still early days yet for KPP,” he said, adding that interest was gaining traction.
Its proximity to the Kertih Integrated Petrochemical Complex (KIPC) and the new Petronas Polymer Technology Centre offered multiple advantages, he said.
The KPP is set to become the country’s first fully integrated plastics hub and the third in the Asian region. It will be launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi today.
KPP would be an economic cluster supporting the plastics and plastics-related manufacturing activities and offer the opportunity for small and medium enterprises to locate their manufacturing facilities where they would have access to a wide range of plastic resins for raw materials.
“Because KPP is close to the main source of polymer resins, it will provide plastics companies access to reliable and just-in-time feedstock supply, which translates into savings, logistics and warehousing costs,” he said.
A project under the ECER developement master plan, KPP is anticipated to draw investments of some RM2bil and generate jobs for 7,000 people and to have a multiplier effect on employment.
“For every direct job, there is a potential requirement for 2.5 indirect jobs in the form of support and ancillary services,” John said.
The 140ha KPP site is next to the existing KIPC within the Petronas Petroleum Industry Complex. It is also close to the facilities in the Kertih-Chukai-Gebeng petrochemical hub.
“Feedstock can also be sourced from the Gebeng Integrated Petrochemical Complex or imported through Kuantan Port,” he said.
He added that there were well-established supply chain services such as warehousing and logistics services for other imported raw materials and finished products for other markets.
“KPP is adjacent to Kertih Port (for liquid cargoes) and Kertih Terminal (for dry and bulk cargoes) for centralised tankage, and connected to the Kuantan Port via the Kertih-Kuantan railway system,” John said.
KPP is also centrally located between Europe and Asia, making it an ideal plastics hub. The other two regional plastics parks are in India and Abu Dhabi.
“In challenging economic times, many international companies will seek out a lower cost base or attractive incentives. KPP meets these requirements,” John said.
On Petroliam Nasional Bhd’s (Petronas) commitment to KPP, he said Petronas had laid the neccesary foundation and invested RM70bil to build the oil, gas and petrochemical-related facilities.
“It has taken Petronas 35 years to develop Kertih,” he said, adding that KPP was expected to be fully operational by 2015.