KUCHING, Oct 5 — Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Openg today expressed his confidence that the Kuching Smart City Master Plan (KSCMP) will trigger more economic development, create a clean and friendly environment, and offer better services to the city’s residents by 2030.

“This is the future, but we must manage it properly,” he said at the launch of KSCMP here.

He said the masterplan, apart from Kuching City, will also cover the nearby municipalities of Padawan and Samarahan.

He said these areas will be connected by a light rail transit (LRT) system in future.

“In other words, all these areas will be integrated in the future. Once it is there, people and investment will come,” he added.

Abang Johari said Bintulu will be the next smart city as Samalaju and Kidurong townships, where heavy industries are located, will be expanded.

“So we will also need an LRT system between Bintulu, Samalaju and Kidurong for the convenience of the people in terms of mobility and also we have to connect them with smart networking,” he said.

In his speech earlier, Sarawak Multimedia Authority (SMA) general manager Dr Zaidi Razak said KSCMP is a document which details out how to make cities in Sarawak more liveable and prosperous for the with and businesses, with Kuching as a model.

He said the SMA carried out a comprehensive study to identify the issues which affect the livelihood of citizens, the areas of emphasis to address the issues and recommend strategies and prioritise smart city initiatives

He said the study gathered responses of 632 citizens, 604 business entities, captains of industry, government and non-government organisations representing various interest groups on issues facing Kuching and suggestions to transform Kuching into a smart city.

He said five focus areas for the smart city covering economic growth, smart living, clean environment, digital government, and digital infrastructure were identified in the study.

He added 38 actionable smart city initiatives within the five focus areas that were identified and strategized for implementation from 2021 until 2025.

He said the initiatives are aligned with the state’s Post Covid Development Strategy (PCDS) initiatives and the state’s 12th Malaysia Plan objectives.

He said the masterplan maps out the development of core smart city digital infrastructure platforms and essential shared smart city applications.

“The government agencies, private sector and community could then package and deliver their services and products using the shared smart city applications,” he added.