Media statement (2) by Lim Guan Eng in Komtar, George Town on Wednesday, 22nd February 2012:
1.6 million Penangites deserve full credit for the historic feat of Penang being No. 1 in Malaysia in manufacturing investment
The Penang PR state government congratulates 1.6 million Penangites who deserve full credit for the historic feat of making Penang No.1 in Malaysia in manufacturing investment for the 2nd consecutive year in 2011. This is a marvellous and incredible achievement for the second smallest state in Malaysia without any natural resources.Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamad announced that Penang topped manufacturing investment for the second year running with RM9.1 billion surpassing the targeted RM6.1 billion. In 2010, Penang became top in manufacturing investment in Malaysia for the first time in history with RM12.2 billion.
Penang's achievement in being No. 1 for the second consecutive year is unexpected. The state government has focused on consolidating our human resources and building up capacity to attract critical sectors that are knowledge-intensive, high-tech and high-value added in electronics, LED lighting, renewable energy such as solar energy, avionics and aerospace, medical devices and biotechnology.
The PR Penang state government is proud to be part of this historic success and would continue CAT governance based on Competency, Accountability and Transparency. Open competitive tenders and public declaration of assets by Penang government leaders have inspired confidence amongst investors of our political commitment towards good and clean governance as well as personal obligation to integrity in leadership.
The PR Penang state government wishes to thank Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamad and MIDA for their co-operation with InvestPenang. The late Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu should not be forgotten for his legacy in laying the foundation of an industrial state that has enabled the present government to build on this singular success.
The PR Penang state government will continue to build human talent by focusing on training, retraining, retaining and attracting new talent. Further upgrading of logistics and infrastructure both physical and digital is also needed. At the same time, the development of the SME sector will only intensify with the expected completion of the Penang SME Center in June this year that offers cheap rentals to technological start-up companies.
For the first time ever, MIDA introduced a new measurement indicator of "total investment" which included manufacturing, services and primary sectors. In this new category of "total investment", Penang lost out narrowly to Sarawak which received a huge boost from oil and gas investments. Sarawak attracted some RM14.35 billion in total investment last year, to Penang's RM14.038 billion. Petronas alone invested RM6.7 billion in Sarawak as compared to minimal investments for Penang.
Despite not having such primary sectors investments, Penang only lost out by RM300 million to Sarawak due to the surprising strength of Penang's services sector. The services sectorhas been identified by the state government as one of the twin engines of economic growth together with manufacturing. Penang hopes to see the services grow to more than 50% of GDP by 2020.
US newswire Bloomberg had in October 2011 described Penang's growth into Malaysia's "biggest economic success" despite the federal government's focus on Johor and Sarawak. The Penang state government is willing to share this success with the Federal government for the benefit not only of 1.6 million Penangites but for all Malaysians who will benefit from the increased tax receipts.
*Lim Guan Eng, Penang Chief Minister