Posted by SM Maulana
(The Edge) – The Selangor state government is at an advanced stage of setting up an “investors’ club” to pool as much as US$10 billion (RM33 billion) for investment in the state and the region, Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said yesterday.
He said the prospectus for the Selangor Fund would be ready in about three months, and some five or six overseas investors, mainly from the United States and the Middle East, had shown interest in subscribing to the fund.
The idea was to set up a club for foreign investors worth at least US$500 million as a membership criterion and having Selangor serve as a hub for their activities in the region, he said.
“We want to provide a one-stop centre to deal with foreign investors such as their application of land. We would have a resource centre and provide them with corporate finance advisory and related services. We are moving forward in providing support to investors,” he told the media at his official residence.
Khalid said Selangor had more advantages compared with Singapore, which is also competing for projects.
“I have a flair for understanding of the Arabic language. I can say it’s also cheaper (to set up operations) here,” he said.
Khalid noted however that the state could only be a facilitator of the fund and not a participant of it.
Meanwhile, he reiterated that the state’s intention to “revisit” privatised projects to ensure all stakeholders — the state government, people and private sector — would benefit from privatised projects.
“It’s time for us Malaysians to review privatisation… Maybe our numbers were not stacked well.
“I am a corporate man. I don’t object to people making profit. But I do not think we should make profit at someone’s expense. We have to seek equitable balance,” he said.
Khalid said he was willing to work closely with the federal government for the benefit of the people.
“Our (the state and the federal) relationship is slowly getting better now. If the federal government ask me to do something good for the people, then I will do it,” he said.
On another subject, Khalid said it was “most unlikely” that there would be a by-election at his Bandar Tun Razak parliamentary constituency to make way for Pakatan Rakyat de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
“All 31 of us (members of parliament from PKR) have volunteered to give our seat to Anwar. But he is considering three to four other constituencies,” he said.
Khalid also said he hoped by next year the state would have a clearer idea as to when it would be able to carry out local elections.