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Jeffrey: Sabah should emulate S’wak in abolishing cabotage policy

26th April, 2017


KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah state government should emulate its Sarawak counterpart in calling for the abolishment of cabotage policy which requires all goods to enter the state through Port Klang, said STAR president Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.

He expressed this in support of Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg and the Sarawak state cabinet calling for repeal of the controversial policy which they reckoned is among the ways to lessen the price of goods in Sarawak.

Abang Johari said the move would also ease efforts to develop the state’s basic infrastructure as the construction material also needed to be imported and sent through Port Klang.

“The cabotage policy must go for the benefit of the Borneo states. I agree with the proposal made by Chief Minister of Sarawak.

“The cabotage policy, which was intended to protect the Malaysian shipping industry, is only raising the cost of doing business and consumer goods in Sabah and Sarawak.

“That is also why there are thousands of factories in Malaya and less than 200 hundred in Sabah. More factories mean more jobs. Unfortunately, the Borneo states are being denied these opportunities because the investors do not find it attractive to invest in Sabah because of such unfavourable policy like cabotage policy,” said Dr Jeffrey.

The Bingkor assemblyman further noted that the cost of imported goods in Sabah, such as sugar and onions are comparatively 20 – 30% costlier than Peninsular Malaysia.

“Since this cabotage policy is good for Malaya, they (Federal government) should keep it but it should not apply to East Malaysia due to its negative impact on the people,” he said.

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