This is what Iskandar Malaysia aims to be by 2025: “A Strong and Sustainable Metropolis of International Standing.” This is one of the definition of a metropolis: “A metropolis, from the Greek for ‘mother city’, was initially the places from which settlers were sent to discover, and colonize other areas. It has since developed into a descriptive term for large cities that are key centers of national and regional socio-economic activity, sharing many of the same characteristics with a global city ” (source of metropolis definition)
Generally, I would think Iskandar Malaysia is not as successful as it was envisioned. It does have another 6 more years to prove everyone wrong. However, even as at today, it is definitely not a white elephant as mentioned by some people. Especially those who have never driven into Iskandar before. I know, many would like to point out the empty units at night. Perhaps it’s good to note that these units are either still owned by the developer or the owners continue to pay for them. It’s not like the whole development is abandoned yeah. Please be objective.
Besides, some catalysts have been pushed back. For example, the Rail Transit System (RTS) which the government to government discussion is still ongoing. Or the High Speed Rail (HSR) which is delayed for 5 years or more. What are some of the key numbers as at 2019? Well, let’s look at some of them.
Article in themalaysianreserve.com VPC Asia Pacific property consultant Bruce Lee said, of people who merely looked at the surface, “They really need to look at the number. In 2014, when it had 11 years to go, Iskandar Malaysia had already achieved 41% of its investment target. With six years to go, there is a high chance for the mega development to realise its target. So I believe Iskandar Malaysia will happen.”
Asiacap Valuer & Property Consultants Sdn Bhd property valuer Kit Au Yong said overall, the Iskandar Malaysia planning has its merit. He said, “Probably the market has not been able to catch up and it has also been overly spread out with a lack of density. All this while, the extended supply of many projects has been a risk without strong and sustainable real demand. Perhaps, it would be better if the supply rate was controlled at a less ambitious way.”
Singapore is estimated to have a population of 5.7 million as at 1H19, while Iskandar Malaysia has only 1.8 million people in 2013. Iskandar Malaysia targets to have up to three million people by 2025, almost reaching Johor’s overall population of 3.74 million in 2018.
The economic corridor is also targeted to achieve RM383 billion in investments by 2025, and has already achieved a cumulative investment of RM272.9 billion from 2006 until Sept 30, 2018. It is also projected to create 817,500 employment opportunities by 2025, and has so far created more than 740,000 jobs in the region.
Of the total committed investments, IRDA said domestic investors contributed 60% (RM164.9 billion) while foreign investors contributed the other 40% (RM108 billion). The top five foreign countries investing in the region are China, Singapore, the US, Japan and Spain.
From July to September 2018, IRDA said the top five sectors that contributed to the total investments were mixed development with a total of RM9.7 billion, followed by logistics (RM670 million), creative (RM540 million), education (RM540 million) and tourism (RM320 million).
Some of the recent investments in the promoted sectors in Iskandar Malaysia include the Shattuck-St Mary’s Forest City International School by Country Garden Pacificview Sdn Bhd, Tunku Laksamana Johor Cancer Centre by Asian American Medical Group and Toppen Shopping Centre by IKEA South-East Asia. The article is a long one and has many more points. Read it here: Article in edgeprop.my
Well, enough of debates. For those who continue to believe Iskandar Malaysia to have good potential, I am with you. For those who continue to believe that Iskandar Malaysia will not be successful but somehow Singapore SMEs could keep growing by relying just on itself or perhaps the Indonesian islands instead, you have your points too. Perhaps everything will be much clearer if the RTS is given a go-ahead and construction starts. Perhaps we just have to wait for the conclusion in 6 years time. Happy visiting Iskandar Malaysia yeah. Lots of Singaporeans are there every weekend by the way.
Next suggested article: RTS? Committed to ensure it happens