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Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Kuwait Finance seeks partners for RM1b project

KUWAIT Finance House Malaysia Bhd (KFHMB) is looking for local and international partners to develop a parcel of land worth RM1 billion in the Iskandar Development Region (Iskandar) in south Johor that it recently acquired.

TOKEN OF APPRECIATION: Salman presenting a souvenir to Johor Economic Planning Unit director Datuk Hamsan Saringat (right) after officiating at Kuwait Finance House's Awareness Campaign yesterday.

The Islamic bank is in talks with investors from China, Australia, Singapore and the Middle East to develop the 252.5ha plot located in a prime area near Gelang Patah.

Plans are under way to develop it into a mix of residential and commercial structures and there are billions of ringgit worth of projects that could be derived from the venture from constructing the infrastructure to maintenance and services.

KFHMB managing director Datuk K. Salman Younis said discussions are still at the initial stage and another three months would be needed to come up with details on the mixed development plan of the land.

"We are looking for partners to develop the piece of land. We have no estimates yet, give us three months to come up with further details on the development concept and the parties involved," he said at a press conference in Johor Baru yesterday.

Salman said the bank is looking at the possibilities of developing the land with multiple investors as the prospective people who have been approached have shown keen interest in investing in Iskandar.

"Many investors are confident of making long-term commitments in Iskandar because it is strongly supported by the the federal and the state governments," he said, adding that the core value of the bank is to support the mission and vision of the country in which they operate.

Salman said the bank is serious in its commitment to invest in the IDR, which is supposed to become a metropolis in 2025, by opening its first branch outside the Klang Valley in Johor Baru within the first quarter of next year.

KFHMB has two branches in Kuala Lumpur and one in Shah Alam, Selangor.

"Through our presence in Johor, we will not only expand our network here, but continue the role of bridging the Middle East and Asian regions to promote greater economic integration," he said.

By New Straits Times (By Siti Nurbaiyah Nadzmi)

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