Has The Transport Ministry And Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB) Resolved The Problems At Padang Besar Inland Dryport Railway Station That Prevented Penang Port From Earning Revenue Of Between RM75 Million To RM100 Million Annually?(en/cn)

Press Statement By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng In Komtar, George Town On 15.1.2014.

The Penang state government urges Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishamudin Tun Hussein Onn to come clean on the status of the privatisation of Penang Port, whether operational control has been granted to Seaport Terminal owned by tycoon Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhari, the terms of this privatisation exercise and how it benefits Penang and the public, particularly when there was no open competitive tender. If the Transport Ministry is unable to convince the public of the real benefits to the public of this closed privatisation exercise, then a fresh open competitive tender should be called.

This lack of direction, certainty and clarity by the Transport Ministry over the future of Penang Port is not only a loss to the logistics business in Penang but can also jeopardize Penang’s potential to establish itself as a hub in the Indonesia, Malaysia Thailand Growth Triangle as well as transform into an international and intelligent city. The Transport Ministry must take full responsibility for the powers granted to them to run our country’s ports. By failing to do so, they also surrender the power to change the people’s future for the better.

At the same time, has the Transport Ministry and Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB) resolved the problems at Padang Besar Inland Dryport Railway Station that prevented Penang Port from earning revenue of between RM75 million to RM100 million annually? Established in 1983, the border dryport is managed by Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB)’s Multimodal Freight and fraught with problems of land scarcity and inept handling of cargos coming from Thailand.

It was reported that some 500,000 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent unit) cargos on the other side of the border in Thailand, cannot come in because the dryport is unable to cope with the load. KTMB is struggling to cope with 120,000 TEUs because their cranes are not up to standard. Clearly, KTMB is good at moving passengers but not so with containers.

As such, these cargos from Thailand that failed to enter Malaysia are being shipped out from ports in Phuket, Trang, Bangkok and even Singapore. This is one of the reasons why despite the existence of seven Super Post Panamex cranes that could cater to 8,000 TEUs per vessel, Penang Port only handled one million TEUs a year, five times less than Port of Tanjung Pelepas that began in 1989.

Another problem is the failure of the Federal government to fulfill its promise of implementing the RM 353 million deep sea dredging project at the Northen Channel of the Penang port to allow super containers to come to Penang Port. The 3 year delay is deep sea dredging has caused extensive loss of business and competitiveness for Penang Port, which can only be addressed when the future of Penang Port vis-à-vis the status of the privatisation exercise is addressed.

LIM GUAN ENG

—-Mandarin Version—-

槟州首席部长林冠英于2014年1月15日在槟城乔治市光大发表声明:

交通部长和大马铁道有限公司是否已解决玻州巴东勿刹Inland Dryport Railway Station的问题?这已阻挠槟州港口有限公司每年赚取7500万令吉至 1亿令吉盈利。

槟州政府促请交通部长拿督斯里希沙慕汀全盘托出槟城港口有限公司私营化的状态,是否有关港口营运已交由土著企业大亨丹斯里赛莫达操作为海港终站。这项在没有公开招标的情况下进行的私营化计划,它如何让槟城和人民受益? 如果交通部长无法说服公众认同这项封闭式招标计划能够真正惠及人民的话,那就应该号召重新公开招标。

交通部这项对槟城的未来缺乏方向,确定性和明确性的决定, 不仅令槟城失去物流业的发展,同时也危及槟州要打造具有潜力的印尼、马来西亚和泰国成长三角洲的枢纽,转型为国际及智能城市。交通部将我们国家的港口授权于他们,他必须负上全责。倘若他无法承担,他们必须交出权力,以许人民更美好的未来。

同时,交通部和大马铁道公司是否已解决玻璃州巴东勿刹 Inland Dryport Railway Station的问题?这已阻挠槟州港口有限公司每年赚取7500万令吉至 1亿令吉之间的盈利。边境货运站于1983年设立,由大马铁道有限公司子公司Multimodal Freight所管理,一直都面对土地欠缺和没有能力处理从泰国运入的货柜的问题。

据报告透露,约50万于泰国另一边境的标准集装箱(20呎)无法进入货运站,因为边境货运站无法应付其承载量。大马铁道公司疲于应付12万标准集装箱,因为他们的起重机未能达到标准。显然,大马铁道有限公司只擅长管理乘客,而非货柜。

因此,未能进入马来西亚的泰国货柜,已转往普吉,董里,曼谷,甚至新加坡港口。这也是其中一个原因,为何槟城港口即使目前拥有7个Super Post Panamex 起重机,有能力承载每艘货船8000个标准集装箱,每年却只能够承载100万个标准集装箱,比1989年才开始营运的丹绒柏乐巴斯港口少了5倍。

另外,联邦政府没有兑现3亿5300万令吉的槟城北岸码头挖深海床工程,让大型货柜能够进入槟城港口的承诺。这已推迟3年的挖深海床工程已造成槟州港口业务和竞争力上的损失,唯为坦于面对私营化的状态才能加以解决槟州港口有限公司的未来。

林冠英

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