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June 6, 2007

Penang turns to high tech for growth
Penang could continue to generate growth by turning to high technology and
focusing on research and development (R&D).

Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon said the transformation from
labour-intensive industries to those that focused on capital and skills
was to add value to the industries, enabling workers to improve their
living standard with the higher pay.

"In this new millennium, I believe that the transformation towards high
technology could ensure continued economic growth and attract more foreign
investors to the state although it is facing stiff competition from
countries such as China, Vietnam, India and even Russia," he said in the
interview programme "60 Minit Bersama Menteri" (60 Minutes with the
Minister) on RTM1 channel on June 6.

He said despite the competition, Penang managed to attract RM4 billion in
foreign investments in 2005 from RM2 billion the previous year. "Last
year, we not only managed to maintain it at RM5.3 billion but it was also
a record in 25 years of industrial development in the state."

Dr Koh said the achievement was the result of the state government's
relentless efforts together with the federal government, particularly the
International Trade and Industry Ministry and the Science, Technology and
Innovation Ministry in attracting investors and bringing in new technology
and products.

On polluted rivers in the state, he said the problem continued to pose a
challenge as it stemmed from the people's bad habits and irresponsible
actions. He said the cleaning up of Sungai Pinang, for instance, would be
carried out in stages and required the cooperation of all including the
public. Bernama

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