KUCHING, Feb 3 — Sarawak Deputy Premier Datuk Douglas Uggah wants to meet federal Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook to discuss the state’s intention to take over Bintulu Port, the country’s premier liquefied natural gas (LNG) port.
Uggah said he was tasked by Premier Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg at yesterday’s state Cabinet meeting to discuss matters with Putrajaya.
“The premier had said that he wanted the state government to take control of the port, which has been declared as a federal port, in line with the state government’s strategic policy to streamline the administration of all ports in the state,” Uggah, who is also the state infrastructures and port development minister, said in a statement today.
He said the state government hopes to table an amendment to the Port Authorities Ordinance 1961 by the end of this year.
“The state government wants the Bintulu Port to be part of the cluster of state ports, under a Central Port Authority which will be incorporated by state law,” he said, adding that the ministry will come up with a Sarawak Port Master plan.
The plan is aimed at improving and enhancing the efficiency of port services, port security through the installation of vessel traffic management system, aids to navigation facility, crane, dredging works and exploring new business opportunities.
Uggah added that the state government had allocated a sum of RM4 million for the master plan study, starting with the Miri Port Authority.
Loke had said recently that he was waiting for an official request from the Sarawak government to discuss the takeover of the Bintulu Port.
Loke’s statement was in response to Abang Johari’s speech at a dinner that the state government had intended to take control of the Bintulu Port.