SAMALAJU (Jan 31): Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas is pleased with the major improvement to Samalaju Port main vessel turnaround time previously from 20 days to only four to six days now.
“I visited Samalaju Port in March 2022, was briefed that turnaround for vessels are as long as 20 days, some of the investors that we met they expressed frustration,” he said.
The Second Minister for Finance and New Economy and Minister for Infrastructure and Ports Development thus gave the port management the task to improve its services.
“I am very happy to inform that they indeed made a major improvement, their efficiency has increased, their turnaround now is four to six days, depending on the cargo, that is indeed a big improvement from the 20 days it was done before,” he told reporters during a press conference after a working visit to the port yesterday.
Uggah congratulated the Samalaju Port management for the achievement as they had managed to resolve the issue and improve their productivity one month earlier than the deadline of Dec 2022 given to them.
“If all of us work together nothing cannot be achieved, I gave them up to December 2022, I am glad they achieved it in October, one month earlier.
“We didn’t stop there, we are moving forward, from the briefing on development to take place in the Samalaju Industrial area, we can assure port investors as well as the state government, Samalaju Port will play a part, continue to improve its services, increase productivity using their latest technology.
“Congratulations on the performance, let us chart another direction to make sure Samalaju Port will be the world class port service in Samalaju Industrial area in Bintulu,” he said.
Touching on his working visit to the port, Uggah said his Ministry of Infrastructure and Ports Development (MIPD) is looking closely at the performance of the ports.
Samalaju Port, he said, is very important in supporting the Samalaju Industrial area because Sarawak is encouraging investors to come and earlier they had been briefed by the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), Regional Corridor Development Authority (Recoda) and Bintulu Development Authority (BDA) on the number of investors in Samalaju.
“We are appealing for more to come, I’m sure they want to find out about the performance of our port,” he said.
He added that was the reason why his ministry paid very particular attention to the development of the port, improvement of its services, and increase of productivity.
Also present were Deputy Minister of MIPD Dato Majang Renggi, Bintulu Port Holdings Berhad chairman Dato Abdul Mutalib Alias, MIPD permanent secretary Chiew Chee Yau, Samalaju Industrial Port Sdn Bhd chairman Datuk Nasarudin Md Idris, EPU director Lester Matthew, Bintulu Port Holdings Berhad Group chief executive officer Ruslan Abdul Ghani, Recoda chief executive officer Datu Ismawi Ismuni, BDA general manager Datu Muhammad Yakup Kari, Board of Directors of Samalaju Port Authority, Samalaju Port Industrial Sdn Bhd and representatives of Samalaju Port investors.