: The Malaysian Malay Chamber of Commerce Labuan has lauded the Labuan Corp's (LC) move to sell the 24 hectares of leasehold land for reclamation at the Rancha-Rancha industrial zone to a listed company for tourism development.
Its Chairman, Datuk Yussof Mohammad, said despite public outcry over the sale of the land, which was said to be below the market value, it would eventually benefit the island in the long run.
"We were told the price was based on the government's valuation and not solely decided by the LC and the land had not been reclaimed," he told Bernama today.
He said the cost of the reclamation per 0.4ha was estimated at RM2 million.
"We are aware of people criticising the LC's move to sell the land which is relatively low.
"But we have to look at the long-term benefits as the island needs development and we should be thankful to the listed company to invest in Labuan after our heavily-dependent oil and gas sector was badly hit by the slump," he said.
Enra Group Bhd's unit, Enra Labuan Sdn Bhd, has signed a conditional sale and purchase agreement with Perbadanan Labuan early this month to acquire the land for RM7.57 million.
The group had said the agreement also included an up to five-year call option to acquire a further 140ha of nearby leasehold land.
Enra said the land, adjacent to the Rancha-Rancha Industrial Estate, Labuan's primary industrial area in the southern part of the island, was strategically located near Labuan's key industrial and commercial areas and businesses.
"The board views the acquisition positively due to the Federal Government's various announced plans to transform Labuan," it said.
Enra Group, in a filing to Bursa Malaysia Securities Bhd (early this month) said the purchase of the first parcel of the leasehold land for RM7.57 million from Labuan Corp was to increase its landbank for property development.
Member of Parliament for Labuan, Datuk Rozman Isli, the group planned to turn the area into a cruise terminal to serve major cities in the region.
The Federal Government has announced that it intended to develop Labuan into a premier tourist destination and low-cost carrier hub for East Asia (China, Japan, South Korea, Kalimantan and the East Asean Growth Area). -- Bernama