THE CHINESE NEW YEAR AND 5th ANNIVERSARY DINNER OF PENANG PREMIUM BUSINESS ENTERPRISE ASSOCIATION (PPBEA)
SPEECH BY THE CHIEF MINISTER OF PENANG YAB TUAN CHOW KON YEOW FOR THE CHINESE NEW YEAR AND 5th ANNIVERSARY DINNER OF PENANG PREMIUM BUSINESS ENTERPRISE ASSOCIATION (PPBEA)
30 January 2023
Macalister Ballroom, Victory Annex Wing
Good evening to all of you.
I wish to thank PPBEA for having me as the Guest of Honour for your 5th anniversary and also the Chinese New Year celebration. Let me take this opportunity to wish all the members of PPBEA a roaring Year of the Dragon in advance!
I also want to congratulate PPBEA for reaching the 5-year milestone since your establishment. The association has many things to count for – including the signature Power Talk series that presented many interesting ideas to inspire businesses, and quite a number of charitable contributions to aid our underprivileged communities.
The people in this room are part of the movers and shakers of Penang’s economy, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your support to drive this remarkable growth together with the State Government through our many initiatives over the years.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
Despite being the second smallest state in Malaysia, Penang is consistently ranked among the top 3 in economic contribution, growth and our investment pull towards our nation. In fact, the numbers are very promising as we have successfully retained our position as the country’s top exporter in December last year. Five states dominated the nation’s exports which accounted for a total 81.1 percent and I am happy to note that Penang is Number One at RM37.3 billion.
Moreover, we are on track to record another great year in our approved manufacturing investment. The latest figures we have which cover the three quarters of 2023 showed our approved manufacturing FDI inflows amounted to RM35.8 billion, which is a six-fold increase for a year-on-year comparison. Penang has once again exemplified our leading role as the top manufacturing FDI contributor in Malaysia by capturing 42 percent of the nation’s manufacturing FDI for the corresponding period.
Among the countries with top manufacturing FDI in Penang were the Netherlands, the US and Singapore and they contributed 95 percent towards our approved manufacturing investments.
In our pursuit of excellence, we must recognize the importance of collaboration between the public and private sectors. Hence, much in line with the aspirations of the Penang2030 Vision, the State Government is always working on improving our infrastructure as a means of stimulating economic growth in a city and attracting inward investment as well as retaining our talents. To achieve this, the Penang State Government will continue with our effort to transform Penang into a location of choice for investors, a destination of choice for tourists and a habitat of choice for residents who desire sustainable living.
The expansion of Penang International Airport is slated to take place later this year, together with the construction of the much-awaited cable car project at Penang Hill.
I am also very excited for the commencement of works on the expanded LRT under our transport master plan. Works on Penang Silicon Island have also started, and it shall become a beacon for our immense potential to develop further as the Silicon Valley of the East.
Furthermore, we Penangites have always been known for our resilience, adaptability, and industrious spirit. Today, we see these qualities in the thriving technology sector that continues to evolve within our borders. We are working towards creating an environment that encourages investment, promotes research and development, and ensures that our workforce is equipped with the skills required for the jobs of the future. Hence, Silicon Island in the south is the state government’s answer towards the future and evolving needs of our younger generation.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
The recent episode on our water resource has also given us enlightenment on the importance of preserving them for period of uncertainty and also for the long-term. The State Government is committed towards building up the sustainability of our resources with other components under the unity government of Malaysia to ensure that the livelihood of our residents as well as businesses shall not be affected adversely.
We also look forward to having more engagement with the industry captains and leaders on new opportunities that we can tap into to further grow the economic and social aspects of Penang. For the young and future leaders who are among us this evening, I hope you will carry on the legacy of the pioneers here to continue the development agenda of our State for the many generations to come.
Once again, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate PPBEA for this important milestone in your history and I wish the Year of the Dragon will bring all of us soaring high to the skies.
Thank you and have a great evening!