Monday, May 08, 2017

RM80 mln allocated for Sandakan Airport runway extension project

SANDAKAN: Tourism will become Sandakan’s key economic driver with the refurbishment of its airport terminal and the proposed extension of its runway.

“The ground work is being laid for the revival of this Sabah east coast town,” Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said when launching the Sandakan airport runway extension project on Sunday.

“With larger aircraft accommodated there would be more direct flights from Japan, Korea and China,” he said when launching the runway extension project here on Sunday.

“Sabah has all it takes to draw in the tourists. There’s the beautiful scenery, the wildlife including orang utan. The hotels will be full in time to come,” said Najib.

He said a sum of up to RM80 million had been allocated for the runway extension project that was not among the projects listed under the 11th Malaysia plan.

“In my last visit to Sandakan in March, I met some of the business community who told me how important this project was,” Najib in adding that he immediately called Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai to get it approved.

“If something will benefit Sabahans, I will approve it,” said the Prime Minister in adding that he had given the nod for more projects in the state than a predecessor who was in power for 22 years.

Najib also said there must be a continuity of the present government, reminding the people to continue giving their support. “The Barisan Nasional government does not need to incite or mislead the people as we have proven ourselves with initiatives implemented for the people,” the Prime Minister further said.

Najib said contractor for the extension work has been appointed and had received the Letter of Intent (LoI).

“It is the same contractor involved in the upgrading work of the Sandakan airport. At the moment, they are in the negotiation process but I really hope that they can speed up and start mid-year,” Najib added.