China’s CREC to set up US$2b regional centre in Bandar Malaysia

Najib said the project will be a major investment boost for Malaysia. — Bernama pic
Najib said the project will be a major investment boost for Malaysia. — Bernama pic

KUALA LUMPUR, March 21 — China Railway Group Limited (CREC) will spend US$2 billion (RM8.14 billion) to set up its regional centre in the Bandar Malaysia land bank.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who made the announcement today, said the project will be a major investment boost for Malaysia.

"Today we see the first step forward, we now have a commitment from CREC to set up their regional centre in Bandar Malaysia.

"We believe this development will bring a huge amount of foreign investment starting with the US$2 billion dollar investment by CREC,” he said in his speech during the announcement at the Hilton Hotel here.

At a press conference later, CREC general manager Cai Ze Min said the project will create "thousands" of jobs for Malaysians.

"I understand that there will be thousands of job opportunities. Maybe 10,000," he said.

Iskandar Waterfront Holdings (IWH) chief executive Tan Sri Lim Kang Hoo said upon completion, Bandar Malaysia is expected to have a Gross Development Value (GDV) of some RM160 billion.

Last year, CREC and the Johor-based IWH acquired a 60 per cent stake in Bandar Malaysia from the state-owned firm 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) for RM7.41 billion.

The sale was part of a three-legged rationalisation plan for 1MDB that began in June last year.

Bandar Malaysia, located on a land which currently houses the Royal Malaysian Air Force base, will become Malaysia's first integrated transit-oriented, mixed-use cluster.

Just 7km away from the capital city centre, the development will serve as Kuala Lumpur's gateway for the high speed rail-line to Singapore and become a central transport hub.

With a turnover exceeding US$100 billion per annum, CREC is one of the world’s largest engineering and construction firms, and was ranked 71 in last year’s Fortune 500 list.