KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s foreign direct investment (FDI) is on the upward trend and expected to surpass the RM7 billion mark when a high impact investment is factored in this year, said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor.
“From January 2022 to August, we have secured RM5.1 billion worth of foreign investments which represented a rise from the RM4.4 billion worth of foreign investments secured in June of last year.
“This also effectively ranks Sabah as the third biggest in foreign investments in Malaysia,” he said at the dinner he hosted for the Council of Arab Ambassadors at the Sabah International Convention Centre (SICC) here last night.
Hajiji who is also Finance Minister said Sabah was pushing this momentum and he was confident that Sabah will remain an attractive destination for investment.
“I have stressed from the onset that we want to be investor-friendly and we will ease all hurdles to facilitate all investments,” he said.
In this respect, Hajiji invites the Council of Arab Ambassadors to consider Sabah where the State Government has made possible an environment conducive to investments.
The Council of Arab Ambassadors delegation comprised nine diplomats led by the Ambassador of the Republic of Yemen to Malaysia who is also Dean of the Arab Diplomatic Corps in Malaysia, Dr. Adel Mohamed Ali Ba Hamid.
The other diplomats Somalia Ambassador to Malaysia who is Dean of the African Corp Abukar Abdi Osman, Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates to Malaysia Khalid AlGhaith, Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to Malaysia Mahmoud Hussein Saeed Qattan, Ambassador of Jordan to Malaysia Thamer Abdalla Mohammad Adwan, Ambassador of Palestine to Malaysia Walid Abu Ali, Ambassador of the State of Qatar to Malaysia Fahad Yousef Kafoud, Ambassador of Libya to Malaysia Mohamed A.M. Attia and the Charge D’Affaires of the Republic of Sudan in Malaysia Omer Mahgoub Ahmed Oushek.
On record, the Chief Minister said Malaysia’s trade with some Arab countries has been good.
For example, Malaysia’s total trade with the State of Qatar increased by 130.2 per cent to RM2.87 billion as compared to RM1.25 billion for the same period in 2021.
Similarly, Malaysia’s total trade with Saudi Arabia increased by 116.7 per cent to RM16.98 billion as compared to RM7.84 billion (USD1.91 billion) for the same period in 2021.
“Tomorrow, Your Excellencies will be able to hear firsthand from Invest Sabah Berhad, the state’s investment arm on Sabah’s huge potential and vast investment opportunities. I hope this briefing will shed deeper insight for exploring collaborations and building win win partnerships,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Dean of the Arab Diplomatic Corps in Malaysia and Yemen Ambassador to Malaysia, Dr. Adel Mohamed Ali Ba Hamid in his foreword speech described their visit to Sabah was historical.
“After the Covid-19 that hits the whole world, we believe that the time is right for us to join hand and help to overcome the impact of the pandemic,” he said.
Dr Adel said in this respect, the Council of Arab Ambassadors in Malaysia decided to visit states in the country including Sabah and look for business opportunity.
Also present Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Masidi Manjun, Special Tasks Minister Datuk Ariffin Arif, State Secretary Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Safar Untong, assistant ministers and assemblymen.