KUALA LUMPUR: The Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA) is working closely with Penang state government to upgrade strategic infrastructure in an effort to catalyse developments in less-developed areas.
The collaboration would also allow both parties to implement strategic high-impact projects and human capital programmes under the recently approved Northern Corridor Economic Region (NCER) Strategic Development Plan 2021-2025 (SDP).
This would facilitate private investments, prioritise job creation and enhance entrepreneurial skills.
These strategic and high-impact projects will see Penang attracting cumulative investments of more than RM82 billion by 2025 and create over 90,000 new jobs and over 22,000 new entrepreneurs.
“Penang has been collaborating with NCIA to ensure the strategic projects and human capital programmes outlined in the SDP are expedited to enable investment growth and contribute to elevating the socioeconomic status of the Rakyat in Penang,” said Penang chief minister Chow Kon Yeow.
To achieve post-Covid-19 socioeconomic recovery, Penang has been positioned to be the focal point for research, development and innovation in the NCER befitting its tag as the Technological Hub of the region.
A key driver of this is the NCER Technology Innovation Centre (NTIC) that will strengthen the electrical and electronic (E&E), machinery and equipment (M&E), aerospace and medical device ecosystems in the region.
A top priority for Penang is to upgrade the infrastructure and port facilities of Penang Port to ensure the state continues to be the nexus for both local and international logistics and trade within the region.
NCIA said the proposed enhancements will increase the efficiency of Penang Port to function as a trade gateway and boost the overall NCER competitiveness.
“Through NCIA’s programmes, industries in Penang are already creating jobs for those impacted by covid-19. Creating as much value as possible for the Rakyat and the business communities through the strategic initiatives outlined in the SDP is our utmost priority,” said NCIA chief executive Datuk Seri Jebasingam Issace John.
The NCIA-led Single Campus Initiative which positions Penang, Kulim in Kedah, and Ipoh in Perak as a Single Campus will encourage cross-state collaboration to create a more holistic ecosystem, reduce competition and address regional imbalances.
NCIA said it also supports the existing innovation-based programmes such as the Collaborative Research in Engineering, Science and Technology Centre (CREST), which focuses on industry-relevant research and will further drive the growth of the R&D ecosystem in Penang.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic, Penang state government appreciates the various forms of assistance that has been provided by the federal government to ease the hardship of the rakyat.
“It is hoped that the Human Capital Programmes of the NCIA, which have been vital to support and accelerate the revival of Penang and the regional economy through the creation of jobs and economic activities for the rakyat, will be continued throughout this trying period and beyond,” said Chow.
The current Human Capital Programmes (HCP) of the NCIA via empowerNCER, entrepreneurNCER, NCER Talent Enhancement Programme (NTEP) have benefitted about 1,900 participants from amongst the youth, women and unemployed graduates in Penang.
Source : New Straits Times – 5 November 2020 (Thursday)