KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 3): Strategic infrastructure projects such as the Central Spine Road (CSR), which is being implemented by the Works Ministry, is a game-changer for Pahang Barat, according to the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC).
"This project is able to change the economic landscape as it will reduce the travel distance between the East and West Coast of Peninsular Malaysia, as well as open up new areas of economic activity and investment in the vicinity,” said ECERDC chief executive officer Baidzawi Che Mat in a statement.
The CSR project from Bentong, Pahang to Kuala Krai, Kelantan and Kota Bharu-Kuala Krai Highway were reportedly scheduled to be completed by 2025.
The council shared that the ECER Master Plan 2.0 has identified projects for implementation to support the development of key industrial clusters in Pahang Barat.
Subsequently, the Pahang Barat Plus Economic Region Development Plan 2021 study is being conducted by the Pahang Barat Plus Unit, under the Pahang State Economic Planning Division to spur development in the area, it said.
Pahang Barat Plus includes the districts of Bentong, Cameron Highlands, Raub, Lipis, Jerantut and Bera.
"This plan includes strategies to increase investment from the economic development of key industrial clusters such as tourism, agriculture, timber, mining and small and medium enterprises (SMEs), improving infrastructure especially road connectivity system, telecommunication and utility supplies, as well as the development of the Orang Asli community and SME entrepreneurs.
“Projects that are under planning and under implementation are in line with the strategy outlined in the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP) to improve connectivity and transport infrastructure, which will stimulate the local economy," added Baidzawi.
According to the statement, Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz had led a delegation to Pahang Barat yesterday, as part of the Jelajah Belanjawan 2022 programme.
The minister visited Kuala Lipis, Temerloh and the RAMSAR (wetlands of international importance) site in Tasik Bera to survey the development needs in the Pahang Barat Plus Region to ensure that balanced economic development is being implemented to realise the region’s potential as Pahang’s new economic growth centre.