The US$ 100 Million Golf Course In Batu Kawan Is A Testimony Of The Confidence Of Korean Investors In Penang’s Future Despite The Global Financial Crisis And Belief In Our Commitment To Transforming Penang Into An International City.
The Penang state government welcomes the signing of the MOU between PDC and DK ENC to build a US$ 100 million golf course in Batu Kawan as a testimony of the confidence of Korean investors in Penang’s future in spite of the global financial crisis. By proceeding ahead with the golf project during such uncertain times, Korean investors have also signalled their belief in the new government’s commitment to transforming Penang into an international city.
To transform Penang into an international city, we want participation from all nationalities. We have investors from many countries. But we need to work harder to get more investors from some countries such as Korea, without which Penang can not claim to be a truly international city.
Korea has achieved tremendous success in growing its economy from a poor war-torn state to a developed nation. The success of Korea can be seen by its per capita GNP of only US$130 as compared to Malaysia’s US$350 in 1966. Korea’s GNP per capita is now more than US$18,000 as compared to Malaysia’s US$6,000/-. From almost three times better off than Korea 42 years ago, Malaysia is now three times worse than Korea.
The remarkable economic success of Korea was achieved without any natural resources such as oil and commodities, except for its people. There is much to learn from the success of Korea’s economic transformation based on a culture of excellence, a strong work ethic, openness to new ideas and mastery of technology.
Penang bears some similarities in that we are also without natural resources. Penang’s success was built on our human resources and our faith in the ability of the people. Korea’s GDP of US$982 billion in 2007 comprising of 57% services and 40% manufacturing mirrors Penang’s small US$7.5 billion economy. Penang hopes not only to attract investors and tourists to the beautiful city of Penang but also learn how we can replicate Korea’s success.
Everyone knows that Korea’s success does not rest in economic performance alone but also in its popular pop culture, famous throughout Asia, and its sporting athletes. Korean lady golfers are the best in the world reflecting the Korean love for golf.
This US$ 100 million project by DK ENC, which has a track record of building golf courses not only in Korea but also in Ho Chi Minh city, will not only give opportunity for Koreans to indulge in your love for golf but also offer employment and business opportunities for Penangnites. This US$ 100 million mixed development golf project when completed in 2013, will be the most expensive in Penang.
To make Penang a unique attractive destination, we will be taking measures to improve safety and security on one of the safest cities in Malaysia. We will also be improving on traffic and transportation systems as well as communications facilities. Penang will be the first wifi state in Malaysia when our free wireless and affordable wimax services are completed in 2 years. By then anyone can be connected to the Internet any time, any place and any where in Penang for free.
Penang is proud to be the only state promoting Korea in Malaysia. We organised the Korean Food Fest last month and will be organising a Korean cultural performance at the end of this year. By heading a 52-member business delegation to participate in the Asia Pacific Tourism and Investment Conference during the middle of the global financial crisis shows that Penang is committed in welcoming Korean investors or tourists and sincere in being your friend. We offer our friendship and co-operation towards greater prosperity together.
(Speech By Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng During The Signing Of The Memorandum Of Understanding(MOU) Between Penang Development Corporation (PDC) And DK ENC Company Ltd In Seoul, Korea On 30.10.2008 Released In Penang On 1.11.2008)