KUALA LUMPUR: China Railway Group Ltd's (CREC) US$2 billion (RM8.1 billion) investment in Bandar Malaysia is a testament of foreign investors' confidence in the country, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak.

The Chinese company yesterday announced the multi-billion investment commitment in the mixed-use development, where it plans to build its own integrated regional headquarters.

"A mere three months ago, we inked an agreement to develop Bandar Malaysia. Today we see the first step forward. Indeed, it is a clear testimony of confidence in Malaysia's future and the long standing friendly ties that we have between Malaysia and China," he said during the CREC announcement at the Hilton Hotel here.

Najib said that investments in Malaysia is on an upswing, adding that Bandar Malaysia would bring in huge amounts of foreign investment into the country in the future, with CREC's deal just the first of many.

He added that the government would also provide incentives for the Bandar Malaysia project because of its significance, adding that it is committed to making the development a success.

"I would like to say that we will consider what is appropriate in terms of incentives, like tax incentives and others, that we can provide for this project. We will make this work because this project is important," he said.

Najib said CREC's US$2 billion foreign direct investment (FDI) is also part of the country's long-term plan to raise private sector investment, which would in return, provide tangible advantages for the country and its people.

"Last year, for instance, 4,887 projects were approved by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority, and these are expected to create 180,240 new jobs.

"We particularly welcome investment from China. Indeed, if we take FDI stock from China and Hong Kong together, it has been increasing at a compounded annual growth rate of 22% over the last seven years," he added.

Later at a press conference, CREC general manager Cai Zemin said the development of its regional centre in Bandar Malaysia would provide some 10,000 job opportunities.


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