SCORE attracts US$1.6 billion investment from Saudi Arabia

Saudi firm to build US$1.6b polysilicon plant in Sarawak (The Star) 

KUALA LUMPUR: Saudi Arabia’s Project Management & Development Company Co. Ltd (PMD) will develop a US$1.6bil polysilicon manufacturing plant in Sarawak, the firm said in a statement on Wednesday.

The plant, which will be one of Asia’s largest, is part of Sarawak’s US$110bil plan to leverage on its energy resources and boost in the state.

“The project is in line with Sarawak’s initiative of promoting green and sustainable energy solutions, leading to further development of industrial base in the state,” PMD chairman Majed Al-Ahmadi said in the statement.

The company’s Kuala-Lumpur based affiliate, Cosmos Petroleum & Mining Sdn Bhd, will own and operate the plant when it starts production in 2016. Polysilicon is used to manufacture solar power panels.

The company has engaged the Malaysian unit of National Bank of Abu Dhabi, the largest bank in the United Arab Emirates, to raise funds for the project. The project is expected to attract investors from the Middle East and Southeast Asia, the bank said.

“This is our largest mandate for project finance to-date. The $1.6 billion will be a mixture of debt and equity,” chief executive of National Bank of Abi Dhabi Malaysia Leong See Meng told Reuters.

The bank, which opened its Malaysian subsidiary last October, aims to help businesses from the Gulf Cooperation Council penetrate the rapidly growing Southeast Asian market.- Reuters


New website for SCORE

Check out the new website for the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) here.

The layout and design is totally new, but more importantly there’s new content for those who want to learn more about SCORE.

The Regional Corridor Development Authority (RECODA) will post the latest news and updates about the Corridor in this website, as well.


AML on track to start production in Samalaju by mid-2013

AML’s manganese ferroalloy plant in Sarawak right on track (The Borneo Post)

January 5, 2012

Artist's impression of AML's facility in Samalaju Industrial Park

KUCHING: Under the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) initiative, the construction of Malaysia’s first manganese ferroalloy plant by Asia Minerals Ltd (AML) at Samalaju Industrial Park will soon witness ground-breaking activities in early March and is expected to be completed by May 2013.

AML last month obtained Detailed Environment Impact Assessment (DEIA) approval from the Department of Environment and also agreed on the basic terms and conditions of Long Term Power Purchase Agreement with Sarawak Electricity Supply Cooperation (SESCO).

“We have resolved to invest between US$250 million (RM793 million) and US$300 million (RM951 million) for the first and second phase of ferroalloy complex project and will discuss with our joint-venture partners for a third phase expansion,” AML corporate planning and business development general manager Yuki Nakamura told The Borneo Post in an exclusive interview yesterday.

“AML estimates that it will require an additional US$100 million (RM314 million) of investment for the third phase expansion, which is expected only to take place after 2015,” he added.

In line with the expansion, AML also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with a number of big corporations from Japan, Korea and Malaysia.

Through the MoU, AML stood to be the majority shareholder with 60 per cent stake of the total investment, while the remaining were held by investors.

“Each of the companies have their own expertise and experience in steel and ferroalloy industries. They will act as product offtakers and will also be involved in the management and production stage,” he explained.

When asked to identify the companies involved, he stated that most of them were public listed companies. However, he said information would be released after February or March.

On the manufacturing front, Nakamura said AML would start ramping up the first phase production in June 2013 and by June 2014, it would be able to hold full production of 240,000 metric tonnes (MT) of manganese ferroalloy and ferrosilicon per annum.

Meanwhile, the second phase was scheduled to start in July 2014 and would be able to produce up to 95,000MT per annum of ferrosilicon, silicon-metal and electrolytic manganese metal by June 2015.

“Given that, from 2015 onwards, AML will reach full production capacity for both the first and second phase with an estimated output of between 330,000 and 340,000MT per annum,” he revealed.

AML was planning to produce a full range of ferroalloy and high-value manganese products required for steel making such as silicomanganese, low carbon silico-manganese, medium and low carbon ferromanganese, silicon-metal, ferrosilicon and electrolytic manganese metal.

To fully utilise the transport facilities in Sarawak, AML had on February 2011, signed a MoU with Bintulu Port Sdn Bhd to further invest in the port, enabling it to receive big vessels such as ‘handymax’ size of ships from the end of 2012.

“We will transport between 40,000MT and 50,000MT of manganese ore per ship from South Africa, Brazil and Australia which will be discharged at Bintulu Port and New Samalaju Port to be established under the SCORE project.

“Including other raw materials such as coal/cokes, silica quartz, etc, we are targeting to import 1,400,000MT per annum of raw materials and export 340,000MT of final products to overseas markets as well as the local Malaysian market,” said Nakamura.

Not forgetting the vision of the Chief Minister of Sarawak, AML was also leveraging on several local consultants to run the projects. “We have our main project consultants working on it in India, Japan and China and we will assign local companies here to support and advice us to suit the local requirement and standards,” he pointed out.

Apart from that, AML has also started its local employment procedure this first quarter. “AML is going to employ around 600 to 650 staff and workers to start the production from June 2013, and start employment procedures from April 2012. In line with the SCORE’s initiatives, we will try to get in as many Malaysians as possible,” said Nakamura.

The Borneo Post (January 5, 2012)

SMEs will also benefit from SCORE: Sibu Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry

SCORE not only for big businesses (The Borneo Post)

January 14, 2012

SIBU: Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) does not only benefit big business tycoons, but everyone who invests there.

Speaking at a Chinese New Year gathering last Thursday, Sibu Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCCI) president Hu Yu Siong said many people had the wrong idea that SCORE was only for big enterprises.

“It does not matter whether domestically or internationally, the future in SCORE is good, and it would benefit both small and medium enterprises (SME) and big business tycoons.”

He advised entrepreneurs to be long sighted in the competitive world, and to discharge their responsibility of helping those in need.

Person-in-charge of the Methodist Children’s Home, Yong Kie Ho, meanwhile, commended SCCCI for its consistent effort to assist the home financially.

He said SCCCI’s concern for the Home had always brought cheer to the children, especially during festive seasons.

Also present at the function were United Chinese Association (UCA) honorary president Datuk Lau Cheng Kiong and CCK Group chairman Datuk Tiong Su Kouk.

The Borneo Post (January 14, 2012)


State and Federal agencies taking care of environmental issues in SCORE: RECODA

No need for new environment monitoring body, says Baya (The Borneo Post)

January 14, 2012

MUKAH: There is no need for now for another body or agency to be set up to monitor the environment in the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) areas.

Recoda chief executive officer Datuk Amar Wilson Baya Dandot said both the state Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) and the Department of Environment (DOE) were sufficient for the job.

He was speaking to reporters on a media trip organised by AZAM, a non- governmental organisation promoting development communications and RECODA after briefing them on the latest developments within SCORE, here, yesterday evening.

RECODA or Regional Corridor Development Authority is spearheading the development, management and promotion of SCORE.

Established under the Regional Corridors Development Authorities Ordinance 2006, it will specifically serve as a one-stop agency to facilitate all investment activities.

Baya said all agricultural or industrial projects would have to strictly observe all existing environmental laws and regulations of the country and state, and any other recommendations from the two bodies.

Meanwhile, he said, RECODA’s immediate concern was to create and sustain investors’ and public confidence in SCORE.

“We are referring to both the physical and non-physical happenings.

“We want to ensure the contractors deliver our infrastructure and amenities. We also want to attract new investors.

“We have our own laboratory to systematically plan, implement and manage, from our budgetting to cashflow.

“Our activities are also about having the all-important workforce, particularly in the various technical fields.” — Bernama

The Borneo Post (January 14, 2012)

Press Metal’s grand plans for Samalaju

Saturday January 14, 2012

New plant to more than double ingot, billet output

MUKAH (Sarawak): Sarawak will have the capacity to produce 300,000 tonnes of high-quality ingots and billets a year when its second aluminium smeltering plant in the Samalaju Industrial Park begins operations in September.

The first plant, sited 38km from here, produces 120,000 tonnes a year.

The two plants are operated by Press Metal Sarawak Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of Selangor-based Press Metal Bhd.

Group executive vice-president Koon Poh Min said that the company had invested RM3bil in the new plant.

He said the higher combined production would go a long way towards helping the company realise its goal to emerge as a global supplier of ingots and billets.

“With the new plant in operation, we will be the biggest in South-East Asia,” he told reporters after a visit to the plant organised by AZAM and RECODA.

AZAM is a non-profit, state-owned non-governmental organisation that facilitates the state government’s development initiatives. RECODA or Regional Corridor Development Authority is the development, management and promotion authority for SCORE or Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy.

Koon said the Mukah plant, which started production in August 2009, was a joint venture with Japanese industrial giant Sumitomo Corp.

“The RM1bil plant is the first and biggest aluminium smeltering plant in the country and the second biggest in South-East Asia,” he said.

He said both plants used Aluminium Corp of China’s technology, which is also used in 215 aluminium smelters worldwide.

Koon said the domestic market accounted for half the company’s current production, while the balance was exported to Japan, South Korea and the growing economies in the Asia-Pacific.

He said the Mukah plant, which employs 800 workers on three shifts, was in the midst of installing a third production line to produce a new product called “A356” used to manufacture alloy wheels.

The raw material for both plants was sourced from Australia, he said. — Bernama

The Star (January 14, 2012)

New water treatment plant for Samalaju

New plant to meet increasing need for treated water (The Star)

October 18, 2011

KUCHING: A new water treatment plant with a capacity several times bigger than the existing one will be built to serve the industries in Samalaju, Bintulu within the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE).

The capacity of the existing plant, which was commissioned several months ago, is five million litres per day (Mld).

Tender for the construction and completion of the proposed new water treatment plant, reservoir and associate facilities under phase I stage 2 of the Samalaju water supply project closed early August.

About 15 companies have submitted bids for the project, industry sources told The Star yesterday.

“We do not know when the contract for the project will be awarded.

“The new water treatment plant will have a capacity which is four times bigger than the existing one.

“There is an urgency to build the new plant to increase the supply of treated water because of the surge in investments in Samalaju Industrial Estate,” the sources said.

According to Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, Samalaju had attracted 13 projects with approved total investment of RM26.4bil.

These projects are predominantly energy-intensive industries such as smelting plants, polycrystalline silicon, metallic silicon and ferro alloys plants.

Under 2012 Budget unveiled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak 10 days ago, the Federal Government has allocated RM978mil for infrastructure development of the five regional corridors, including SCORE.

The allocation for SCORE, reported to be RM93mil, is specifically for the Samalaju water supply project.

Samalaju’s phase I water project, which was implemented by KKB Engineering Bhd, cost about RM300mil.

It was completed and handed over to the authorities about three months ago.

KKB was awarded the project as a turnkey contractor on a design-and-build concept in August 2009.

Works included the laying of 800mm and 650mm-diameter mild steel cement lined pipes stretching for some 85km from the raw water intake point in Bintulu to Samalaju. Also built was a water treatment plant and other related facilities.

The Star (October 18, 2011)


Samalaju’s list of infrastructure projects are being carried out fast, to meet the needs of investors keen to start their operations in Samalaju as soon as possible.

SCORE’s Samalaju is shaping up nicely and in just a few more years, we will all witness it becoming the new home to industries from all over the world.

Right now, no effort is being spared to make Samalaju a conducive place to do business.

Looking to India for skilled manpower needs’wak-taps-skilled-indian-manpower/

S’wak taps skilled Indian manpower (The Borneo Post)

November 6, 2011, Sunday

KUCHING: Sarawak might get skilled workers from India to expedite implementation of the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE).

Minister of Industrial Development Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hassan disclosed that his recent trip with Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud to India was to seek cooperation to secure a sufficient number of skilled workers, including those at the certificate and diploma levels.

“The collaboration is taking place in many forms, such as in the areas of university staff and student exchange, apart from the exchange of knowledge and expertise.

“Of course skilled-job opportunities would be given to our locals first. However, should there still be a shortage, India, with its population of 1.3 billion, will be a source for highly-skilled manpower,” said Awang Tengah to the media upon his arrival at the Kuching International Airport yesterday.

Among those in the delegation were State Secretary Datuk Amar Mohd Morshidi Ghani, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) vice-chancellor Prof Dr Kairuddin Abdul Hamid and director of the State Planning Unit Datuk Ismawi Ismuni.

Awang Tengah said a visit to the Integral University of Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh led to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Unimas and the university, to pave the way for a staff and student exchange programme.

RM50,000 fund to kick-start some activities
The MoU was signed between Khairuddin and Prof Dr S.W. Akhtar, the vice-chancellor of the Integral University of Lucknow.

The main focus of the MoU was on collaborative training programmes, research and development, joint seminar, staff and student exchange and sharing of information.

Taib, who witnessed the signing, announced an initial fund of RM50,000 to kick-start some of the activities inked in the MoU.

Awang Tengah said: “The MoU, among others, also allows us to recruit potential graduates from the university to participate in SCORE’s development.”

Unimas, on the other hand, offered two scholarships to the graduates of Integral University – one for a Master degree programme and the other for a PhD programme.

Awang Tengah, who is also  Second Minister of Resource Planning and Environment, stressed that India was chosen because the country had already reached the developed stage and many  countries were after its skilled manpower.

In total, the delegation visited three universities, the others being Aligarh Muslim University at Aligarh and Jamia Millia Islamalia University (JMIU) at Delhi.  They also visited SJP Polytechnic in Bangalore.

The primary objectives of visiting the other universities were to explore various possibilities, such as staff and student exchange programmes, secondment or attachment of JMIU staff and Unimas, and offering of post doctorate positions to JMIU PhD graduates in Unimas.

Taib allocated 250,000 Indian Rupees (RM17,500) to initiate these activities, especially those pertaining to the recruitment of graduates as potential engineers for SCORE.

At SJP Polytechnic, the delegation also explored the possibility of sourcing their students in future. 

SJP Polytechnic is one of the top polytechnics in India.
It churns out skilled engineers, at the diploma level, in electrical, mechanical and civil engineering and other related technical fields.

Taib also announced a fund of RM10,000 when visiting SJP Polytechnic to initiate various activities, with an eye on recruiting their potential graduates for SCORE.

The Borneo Post (November 6, 2011)


The recent Sarawak delegation to India, led by Sarawak Chief Minister The Right Honourable Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud sends a clear message; that the State will need vast manpower resources to ensure SCORE’s success, and will pull out all the stops to ensure it can deliver on such demands.

Capitalising on India’s talent pool can be seen as one of the first vital steps towards bringing in workers with the right capabilities for the needs of the new industries in SCORE.

SCORE and Environmental Conservation

DOE to keep an eye on heavy industries in SCORE area

October 31, 2011, Monday

KUCHING: Department of Environment (DOE) has set up a special unit in Bintulu to monitor heavy industries for the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) area at Samalaju Industrial Park.

DOE state director Ismail Ithnin on Saturday said the department would station more staff at the unit by the middle of next year to ensure all industries in the area comply with DOE legislations and regulations.

He added currently only Tokuyama Malaysia Sdn Bhd’s detailed environmental
impact assessment (DEIA) had been approved by the department.

“I think at the moment the headquarters has received four projects for approval. One of them is Tokuyama, which has already been approved.

“The ones awaiting approval are Asia Minerals Ltd, OM Materials and Press Metal Sdn Bhd,” he said after attending the launch of State Environmental Week at Sarawak Cultural Village (SCV).
DOE director of evaluation, Halimah Hassan and SCV general manager Jane Lian Labang attended the event.

Ismail added according to the department’s environmental impact assessment (EIA) requirements, one of the major issues at Samalaju is scheduled waste.

“I think the main problem will be concerning scheduled waste. Since these are high tech industries, we won’t have much problem in terms of emission.

“Scheduled waste will become a problem if organisations don’t practice 3R (recycling, recovering and reuse),” he explained.

Ismail said companies, which do not comply with DOE legislation, would be issued warnings or penalty in accordance with the law.

He added the state DOE would be working very closely with Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) and State Planning Unit (SPU) to monitor the environmental impact of these projects.

Halimah said the government is always committed to protect and conserve the environment by implementing legislations such as Environmental Policy, National Biological Diversity Policy and National Climate Change Policy.

Through NREB, DOE has also launched the Rakan Alam Sekitar (RAS) programme as the eyes and ears of environment related agencies.

“I have been informed that from 46,000 registered RAS members throughout the country, almost 16,000 of them are from Sarawak,” she said in her speech yesterday.

Among the activities held during Environmental Week were environment quiz, colouring contest and ‘enviro-race’.

The event was participated by 200 students from schools and higher learning institutes in Santubong and Kuching.

The theme for this year’s event is ‘Environment Conservation, Our Responsibility’.

The Borneo Post (October 31, 2011)


The news that the Department of Environment (DOE) has set up a special unit in Samalaju to monitor the environmental impact of heavy industries there is indeed heartening to hear.

The heavy industries will start their operations at Samalaju Industrial Park by 2013 and DOE is moving in the right direction by setting up such a unit, even before any of the industries start manufacturing anything.

In developing Sarawak into a developed and progressive State, it is important for us never to forget about the importance of conserving our environment.

Besides, it would be worthless for us to become the richest state in the country and yet suffer because our environment was sacrificed to achieve economic prosperity.

Therefore, it is good to see that our State is looking seriously at conserving our environment,
while we are getting SCORE up and running.

Let’s hope we continue our efforts to maintain a good balance between environmental conservation and economic development.

Inviting Brunei to invest in SCORE

Sarawak pitches 4 hydropower projects to Brunei (The Brunei Times)

Friday, September 30, 2011


SARAWAK is inviting Brunei to participate in the development of four hydropower projects in the northern part of the Malaysian state, an energy official said.
Sarawak Energy Berhad’s Chief Executive Officer Torstein Dale Sjotreit told The Brunei Times the projects are part of the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy , which stretches 320km from Bintulu to Mukah in the Malaysian state.
The Sarawak Energy Berhad Group is responsible for the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity in the state of Sarawak.

Sjotreit, who was in the country for the Brunei Energy Expo earlier this month, said the projects are in Lawas and Limbang.

He said construction is slated next year.

“Limbang and Lawas offer independently, two small and two larger sites. There is one small, one large in each of Limbang and Lawas,” he said.

The smaller sites are capable of producing between 40 and 60 megawatts, while the larger sites between 200 and 300 MW, he said.

Sjotreit believes that the four areas could produce as much as 600 MW.

In principle, if Brunei invests in Sarawak’s hydro projects, it would have a renewable energy source for domestic use, he said. “You can export more liquefied natural gas, or oil and gas since you use the renewables (from hydro) for domestic purposes,” which means more export income, he said.

Besides the prospect of obtaining renewable energy, there is also a possibility of human development between Sarawak and Brunei.

“We can develop, exchange and cooperate both in terms of generation and transmission,” he said.

Sjotreit also said Sarawak’s renewable corridor project can offer investment opportunities for Brunei in terms of smelter plants and construction for Bruneian companies.

While saying he has limited knowledge of Brunei’s hydropower capabilities, he said, “It is still a better option to look into co-development with Sarawak in Lawas and Limbang to fulfill renewable energy on the hydropower side.”

He also noted that in terms of renewables, Brunei may have potential in wind and solar.

Previously, the Permanent Secretary of the Energy Department at the Prime Minister’s Office Dato Paduka Hj Matsatejo Sokiaw said that Brunei has little to no capacity in hydropower, especially in comparison with Asean counterparts.

Sjotreit explained the benefits of hydropower is its relatively small environmental impact.

The Brunei Times (September 30, 2011, Friday)


As neighbours on the island or Borneo, it is only natural for us to invite Brunei to invest in SCORE.

As the chief executive of Sarawak Energy pointed out in the above news article, investors from Brunei have many ways in which to take part and take full advantage of the potential of SCORE.

The energy sector in Sarawak could also provide Brunei with various ways in which to diversify its economic activities.

Technically, Limbang and Lawas are too far up north to be considered as part of the official SCORE area, although the projects mentioned by the CEO could be exceptions.

Let’s look for another “win-win” in this for our two countries.