Allay foreign investors' anxiety on Forest City, gov't urged

Rizalman Hammim

JOHOR BARU: The government must address uncertainties surrounding the Forest City project so that foreign investors’ confidence is not affected.

State Consumerism, Human Resources and Unity Committee chairman Dr S. Ramakrishnan said that the authorities must provide clarification on the matter to erase any doubts investors might have.

“We have to send a strong signal. I am sure the state government and the federal government will continue to discuss the matter and come up with the best solution,” he said.

Ramakrishnan was speaking to the media after opening the Iskandar Malaysia Employment Fair (IMEF) 2018 at the Persada Johor, where he represented Menteri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian.

Also present were Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda) chief executive Datuk Ismail Ibrahim and its vice president of business eco-system Nagarajan Prakash Krishnamoorthy.

The issue of foreign ownership of properties at Forest City has caused disagreement between Osman and Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who said last month that non-Malaysians would not be allowed to buy residential units at the project.

On another matter, Ramakrishnan said the salary gap between residents of Iskandar Malaysia and the Klang Valley has narrowed from 14 per cent to five per cent in the last three years.

“Iskandar Malaysia has become an attractive location for people to look for jobs. Companies are also looking at Iskandar Malaysia for expansion, which would create more jobs here,” he said.

Ramakrishnan added that the state government is looking to engage with major companies to determine if they are able to fill their job vacancies and which positions they have difficulty filling.

“We want their feedback on which fields (are proving difficult for them to recruit for) and how we can help to find the necessary manpower,” he said.

A total of 60 companies took part in the fair, offering some 1,500 job opportunities. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd