Wednesday May 31, 2006
Miri to be model for Sarawak
MIRI: The oil capital of Sarawak Miri is expected to enjoy another round of strong development in terms of investments, projects and physical expansion over the next five years, propelled by revenue generated from oil.
Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud said major plans had been drawn up to lure big-time investors from other parts of state and country, and from overseas, to Miri to help realise its great potential as a beautiful and clean resort city.
Miri had expanded physically in all directions, including into the South China Sea via a multi-million ringgit land reclamation and seaside development project, and was now ready to accommodate an influx of development projects, he said.
I am very proud of Miri. Oil resources have ensured that the best is unearthed from the people in this place. Miri is the first place in Sarawak to experience development and understand the meaning of transformation and progress, he said at a glittering ceremony organised by the Sarawak Barisan Nasional on Monday night to celebrate his birthday.
Miri is my birthplace. I grew up here. I played Tarzan and cowboy, and swam in the rivers here. That is why today, I choose to celebrate my 70th birthday here.
We will develop another city in Sibu, and Miri will become the example of how a place can become a progressive city.
The event was attended by state leaders, South Australia Governor Marjorie Jackson Nelson, business leaders, Taibs family members and more than 1,000 dignitaries.
Taib, who went to school here, said oil giant Shell had played a big role in transforming Miri.
Shell has helped so many rural people acquire skills and become professionals like marine mechanics, surveyors, engineers and laboratory assistants, he said.
I myself was one of four pioneer Shell scholars in the 1950s. I also started the first housing project in Miri with Shell. Miri has grown by more than 50 times because of Shell.
Taib said Miri would be used as a model for future development of cities and towns in the state.
He also said the state government would donate RM250,000 to help the Indonesian earthquake victims, while he and his wife would give RM25,000 from their own pockets.