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Work on Penang’s Silicon Island to start on Sept 1, says CM

Work on Penang’s Silicon Island to start on Sept 1, says CM

Published by The Star• 01/9/2023

GEORGE TOWN: Early works on Penang’s man-made island project – Silicon Island – will begin on Friday (Sept 1) after it secured approval from the relevant agencies, says Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.


He said project developer Silicon Island Development Sdn Bhd had obtained Environmental Management Plan approval from the state Environment Department on July 21.


He added that the environmental impact assessment (EIA) report for the reclamation project off the southern coast of Penang island had been approved with 71 conditions on April 11.


“With this, the Penang government would like to express its appreciation to the state Environment Department for its thorough assessment in evaluating and approving this EMP.


“This is the result of cooperation and joint efforts in ensuring that the development of Silicon Island will be carried out in compliance with the environmental and safety (needs) of the local community.


“I also wish to thank all parties involved in contributing their input to the drafting of this EMP as well,” he said in a statement.


With the approval, early works such as deployment of marine buoys and silt curtain installation for the 930ha project would begin on Friday, followed by physical reclamation works on site.

Chow said following the EMP approval, the Penang government would also give out exgratia payments to the affected fisherfolk who had signed up for the Social Impact Management Plan (SIMP).


“The payment will be given out in phases starting today.


“Those concerned will receive 75% of the ex-gratia payment, with the balance of 25% to be given out early next year.


“The payment will be done in phases based on the project scope that has been reduced to one man-made island from three proposed initially.


“The ‘Silicon Island’ project is designed based on environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles.


“It is expected to become a leading technology centre in the region that will come with new job opportunities with long-lasting economic benefits to the locality.


“To begin with, there will be some 600 marine and land-based jobs when reclamation is carried out over 18 months, with priority given to fishermen and local residents,” he said.


Touted as the economic catalyst and new tourism attraction for Penang, the project’s planned developments include the Green Tech Park (GTP) and Heart of the Island (Hoti) business district to attract high-impact investments.


The reclamation effort in two phases would take between 10 and 15 years to complete. The GTP would feature research and design facilities, digital technology infrastructure, ecommerce and business process outsourcing.


Hoti, on the other hand, had been planned as a waterfront commercial hub that would serve as the pulse of the island.


Silicon Island Development Sdn Bhd, which is 70% owned by SRS PD Sdn Bhd, has awarded the design, management and construction of the Phase 1 reclamation works of Island A to turnkey contractor SRS TC Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Gamuda.

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