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Malaysia Secures RM2 Billion Industrial Biotechnology Investment In ECER


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PUTRAJAYA, Aug 12 (Bernama) -- Malaysia has secured a RM2 billion industrial biotechnology investment in the East Coast Economic Region (ECER).

South Korea's CJ Cheiljedang Corporation and France's Arkema SA today announced the setting up of the world's first bio-methionne plant and Asia's first thiochemical platform in ECER Special Economic Zone (SEZ), Kertih Polymer Park, Terengganu.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak, who witnessed the announcement, said the project would generate significant spill over effect and encourage new economic activities such as steam generation using renewable resources.

Najib said the project was expected to generate about RM20 billion in cumulative sales by 2020 and provide employment opportunities to almost 500 local knowledge workers.

"The project will be a significant boost to the ECER and more importantly the Special Economic Zone," Najib said at the announcement of the collaboration between CJ-ARKEMA, Malaysian Biotechnology Corporation (BiotechCorp) and East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC).

BiotechCorp and ECERDC are the joint promoters of the project.

CJ Cheiljedang is a leading producer of fermentation-based products such as feed amino acids, monosodium glutamate and nucleotides with global manufacturing and business operations in six continents while Arkema is a global chemical company and France's leading chemicals producer.

The 80,000 tonne bio-methionine production plant and the thiochemicals platform will be constructed on a 70 hectare site next year and will be operational in 2013.

This will be a breakthrough for the global feed additives industry as for the first time, the production of bio-methionine will pool together both biotechnology advancement and applied chemistry.

Bio-methionine is a sulphur amino acid widely used for animal feed in Asia.

ECERDC Chief Executive Officer Datuk Jebasingam Issace John said the plant will cost about US$400 million.

Issace also said ECERDC targeted to generate annual investments of about RM5 billion.

"For this year, we will exceed our target by October," he said, adding that about RM20 billion worth of projects, out of the RM48 billion secured todate, has taken off the ground.

Source: BERNAMA


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